Interleukin-18 and its gene single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) influence chronic hepatitis C progression
Introduction: Interleukin-18 (IL-18) is a pro-inflammatory cytokine that is induced by hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. Inter-individual variations of IL-18 gene expression may alter HCV-associated liver injury. Variable single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) have been detected within IL-18 gene sequence. Quantitative assessment of IL-18 plasma level and detection of genotype frequencies of 2 functional polymorphisms of its gene (-607 C/A and -137 G/C) were done to assess their impact on the severity of chronic hepatitis C (CHC).
Methodology: Cases group (I) comprised 110 treatment naïve CHC Egyptian patients (78 Males and 32 Females, mean age = 40.7 ± 11.8 years) who underwent routine laboratory investigations. Assessment of plasma level of IL-18 was done by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), detection of IL-18 gene polymorphisms at positions -607 C/A and -137 G/C by polymerase chain reaction sequence specific polymorphism (PCR-SSP) analysis and Liver biopsy with METAVIR scoring were done. The control group (II) comprised 90 healthy participants.
Results: Plasma levels of IL-18 were significantly higher in cases than the control group. We found a statistically highly significant (p < 0.001) positive correlation between IL-18 plasma level and both METAVIR necro-inflammatory grade and fibrosis stage. The A/A allele at -607 position was significantly more frequent (p < 0.05) in patients with F ≤ 1.
Conclusions: Higher IL-18 plasma levels are found in CHC patients and positively correlate with the severity of liver disease. The presence of A/A allele at -607 position of IL-18 gene promoter is associated with milder liver disease.
Copyright (c) 2018 Ebada mohamed said, mohamed Saed soliman, hend Ibrahim shousha, mohamed sanad Rashed, Abeer Abo Elazm, Rania Zakaria Aamer, Mai Hamed Kamel, fatma mohamed abdelsalam
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