Skip to main page content
Access keys NCBI Homepage MyNCBI Homepage Main Content Main Navigation
Review
, 132 (4), 296-305

Pathogenesis, Natural History, Treatment, and Prevention of Hepatitis C

Affiliations
Review

Pathogenesis, Natural History, Treatment, and Prevention of Hepatitis C

T J Liang et al. Ann Intern Med.

Abstract

Approximately 4 million persons in the United States and probably more than 100 million persons worldwide are infected with hepatitis C virus. The virus has the unique ability to cause persistent infection in susceptible hosts after parenteral or percutaneous transmission, and its underlying mechanisms are not well understood. The immunologic correlates of protection and viral clearance and the pathogenesis of liver injury are yet to be defined, but recent studies suggest the importance of cell-mediated immune responses. Although 70% to 80% of infected persons become chronic carriers, most have relatively mild disease with slow progression. However, chronic and progressive hepatitis C carries significant morbidity and mortality and is a major cause of cirrhosis, end-stage liver disease, and liver cancer. Development of an effective hepatitis C virus vaccine is not imminent, but recent advances in technology and basic knowledge of molecular virology and immunology have engendered novel approaches to the fundamental problems encountered in vaccine development. Current therapy for hepatitis C, although effective in some patients, is problematic and still evolving. Advances in modern biology and immunology promise new therapies for this important disease.

Similar articles

See all similar articles

Cited by 220 PubMed Central articles

See all "Cited by" articles

Publication types

Feedback