Hepatitis B virus enhances interleukin-27 expression both in vivo and in vitro

Clin Immunol. 2009 Apr;131(1):92-7. doi: 10.1016/j.clim.2008.10.011. Epub 2008 Dec 9.


The immune system plays important roles in determining the outcomes of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection. Interleukin-27 (IL-27) is a recently identified pro-inflammatory cytokine produced by macrophages, dendritic cells, and epithelial cells. To determine the correlation between HBV infection and IL-27 expression, we investigated the serum IL-27 levels in patients with HBV infection and in healthy individuals. Results showed that IL-27 was significantly elevated in patients as compared to healthy individuals (P<0.001). IL-27 was also detected at higher levels in patients with liver cirrhosis or hepatocellular carcinoma than those with acute hepatitis B or chronic hepatitis B (P<0.05). We also found that IL-27 expression was influenced by HBV e antigen. In addition, our in vitro studies demonstrated that IL-27 promoter activity, mRNA and protein expression were all stimulated in cells transfected with infectious HBV clone.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Antigen Presentation
  • Cell Line
  • Female
  • Hepatitis B / immunology*
  • Hepatitis B / virology
  • Hepatitis B Surface Antigens / blood
  • Hepatitis B Surface Antigens / immunology
  • Hepatitis B e Antigens / blood
  • Hepatitis B e Antigens / immunology
  • Hepatitis B virus / immunology*
  • Hepatitis B, Chronic / blood
  • Hepatitis B, Chronic / immunology
  • Hepatitis B, Chronic / virology
  • Humans
  • Interleukins / biosynthesis*
  • Interleukins / blood
  • Interleukins / genetics
  • Interleukins / immunology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Monocytes
  • Transfection
  • Viral Load


  • Hepatitis B Surface Antigens
  • Hepatitis B e Antigens
  • Interleukins
  • MYDGF protein, human