[Detection and the production mechanism of antinuclear antibodies (ANA) and anti-liver/kidney microsomal tpe 1 antibodies (anti-LKM1) in patients with chronic hepatitis C]

Zhonghua Shi Yan He Lin Chuang Bing Du Xue Za Zhi. 2009 Aug;23(4):278-81.
[Article in Chinese]


Objective: To investigate the prevalence of antinuclear antibodies (ANA) and anti-liver/ kidney microsomal type 1 antibodies (anti-LKM1) in patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC)and to explore the mechanism of production of these autoantibodies.

Methods: Serum samples were collected from 360 patients with CHC (case group), 69 patients with chronic hepatitis B (CHB) and 69 patients with autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) (control group). Serum ANA and anti-LKM1 were detected by indirect immunofluorescence (HF) technique and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), respectively. Multi-factor analysis was performed to explore the correlations of the production of autoantibodies with some factors such as age, sex, viral loads, HCV genotype, biochemical parameters and clinical characteristics.

Results: Fifty-four (15%) of 360 patients infected with HCV were positive in autoantibodies. The prevalence of ANA and anti-LKM1 were 12.5% (45/360) and 2.5% (9/ 360), respectively. The positive rate of autoantibodies in patients with CHC was significantly higher than that in patients with CHB (15% vs 2.9%, P = 0.006), but significantly lower than that in patients with AIH (15% vs 47.9%, P < 0.001). Twenty-one (11.35%) of 185 male patients and 33 (18.86%) of 175 female patients were positive in autoantibodies, the difference in positive rate was significant (P < 0.05). HCV virus loads in the autoantibodies negative group were higher than that in the autoantibodies positive group (7.2 x 10(7) copies/L vs 1.23 x 10(7) copies/L, P < 0.05). There were not significant differences in age and genotype between the autoantibody positive group and the autoantibody negative group. The serum biochemical parameters of the autoantibody positive group were similar to those of the autoantibody negative group. The differences were not significant for the course of disease, clinical symptom, the incidence of cirrhosis between the autoantibody positive group and the autoantibody negative group. The prevalence of autoantibodies was not different for patients with or without interferon treatment (P > 0.05).

Conclusion: Autoantibodies related to AIH can be detected in CHC patients; interferon may not induce the production of autoantibodies; it is very likely that HCV infection induces the autoimmune reaction and the production of autoantibodies.

Publication types

  • English Abstract
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / blood*
  • Antibodies, Antinuclear / immunology
  • Autoantibodies / blood*
  • Autoantibodies / immunology
  • Female
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / blood*
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / immunology*
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / virology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged


  • Antibodies, Antinuclear
  • Autoantibodies
  • anti-liver kidney microsome antibody