Hepatology International

, Volume 13, Issue 4, pp 407–415 | Cite as

Prediction and clinical implications of HBV reactivation in lymphoma patients with resolved HBV infection: focus on anti-HBs and anti-HBc antibody titers

  • Tsutomu NishidaEmail author
  • Tokuhiro Matsubara
  • Takayuki Yakushijin
  • Masami Inada
Review Article


Hepatitis B virus (HBV) reactivation (HBV-R) and hepatitis related to HBV-R are well-recognized complications that occur in patients who have undergone cytotoxic chemotherapy or immunosuppressive therapy. The degree of HBV-R in this population varies from self-limited or asymptomatic hepatitis to acute liver failure, which may lead to life-threatening events. However, no established treatment or standard surveillance method exists for monitoring patients to predict the development of HBV-R during or after chemotherapy or immunosuppressive therapy, particularly regarding resolved HBV infection. Prophylactic antiviral agents and regular monitoring of HBV-DNA levels are known to be useful methods for preventing HBV-R; however, these methods require considerable financial resources, and such resources are limited in the endemic areas of HBV infection. Most patients with resolved HBV infection do not develop a hepatitis flare or self-limited HBV-R with only an increase in HBV DNA. However, some patients may develop HBV-R even 1 year or more after the last chemotherapy treatment. Therefore, predicting the development of HBV-R and its timing is difficult, and exploring markers that could help predict whether or when HBV reactivation occurs is necessary. In this review, we address the predictive risk factors for HBV-R in patients with resolved HBV infection, focusing on the ability of anti-HBs and anti-HBc to predict HBV-R. We conclude that the combination of anti-HBc and anti-HBs titers may be a reliable and useful predictor for managing HBV-R.


HBV reactivation Anti-HBs Anti-HBc Resolved HBV infection 


Author contributions

TN wrote the initial draft of the manuscript. TY, TM and MI critically reviewed the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Tsutomu Nishida, Tokuhiro Matsubara, Takayuki Yakushijin and Masami Inada declare no conflict of interest. The authors alone are responsible for the content and writing of this paper.


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Copyright information

© Asian Pacific Association for the Study of the Liver 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of GastroenterologyToyonaka Municipal HospitalToyonakaJapan
  2. 2.Department of Gastroenterology and HepatologyOsaka General Medical CenterOsakaJapan

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