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Hepatitis C virus infection of peripheral nerves in type II cryoglobulinaemia

Abstract

 Peripheral neuropathy is a frequent complication in patients suffering from type II mixed cryoglobulinaemia (mCGII), a sort of vasculitis that is strongly associated with hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and characterised by high concentrations of anti-HCV antibodies and HCV RNA in the cryoprecipitates. We report the finding of HCV RNA in homogenates of nerve biopsies from five such patients, by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) amplification of different regions of the viral genome. HCV RNA was localized in epineurial cells by in situ RT-PCR. Our data suggest that HCV infection of nerves plays a major role in mCGII-associated neuropathy.

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Received: 12 October 1998 / Accepted: 3 February 1999

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Bonetti, B., Scardoni, M., Monaco, S. et al. Hepatitis C virus infection of peripheral nerves in type II cryoglobulinaemia. Virchows Archiv 434, 533–535 (1999). https://doi.org/10.1007/s004280050380

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  • Key words Mixed cryoglobulinaemia
  • Hepatitis C virus infection
  • Peripheral neuropathy