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Serum IgM antibodies to hepatitis C virus in acute and chronic hepatitis C

  • S. Brillanti
  • Caterina Masci
  • M. Miglioli
  • L. Barbara
Conference paper
Part of the Archives of Virology Supplementum book series (ARCHIVES SUPPL, volume 8)

Summary

A standardized commercially available immunoassay is not available for detection of IgM antibodies against hepatitis C virus antigens (IgM anti-HCV). Therefore, different “in-house” enzyme immunoassays have been assessed. These assays vary greatly in sensitivity, but specificity seems satisfactory in all of them. A typical IgM antibody response to HCV antigens is usually found in nearly all patients with acute hepatitis C. This antibody response rarely precedes the appearance of IgG anti-HCV, and it persists for a few months at high titer. Low titers of IgM anti-HCV are detectable in 50–80% of cases with chronic hepatitis C. IgM anti-HCV reactivity is typically found during acute exacerbation of chronic hepatitis C. Furthermore, many patients with chronic active hepatitis C without acute exacerbation also have IgM anti-HCV. In these patients a correlation exists between the titer of IgM anti-HCV and the biochemical parameters of liver disease. When alpha interferon therapy induces a sustained remission of liver disease activity, positivity for IgM anti-HCV disappears in more than 70% of cases. In contrast, patients who do not respond to therapy rarely loose IgM anti-HCV. In conclusion, serum IgM antibodies to HCV antigens are reliable markers of active HCV-induced liver disease both in acute and in chronic HCV infection.

Keywords

Chronic Hepatitis Interferon Therapy Active Liver Disease Alpha Interferon Therapy Acute Viral Infection 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Brillanti
    • 1
  • Caterina Masci
    • 1
  • M. Miglioli
    • 1
  • L. Barbara
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Internal Medicine and GastroenterologyUniversity of BolognaItaly

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