Noninvasive assessment of hepatic fibrosis and necroinflammatory activity in Egyptian children with chronic hepatitis C virus infection using FibroTest and ActiTest

Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2010 Aug;22(8):946-51. doi: 10.1097/MEG.0b013e328336ec84.


Background: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is a major cause of chronic hepatitis and hepatic fibrosis. Liver biopsy, because of its limitations and risks, might be considered an imperfect gold standard for assessing the severity of chronic liver diseases. In this study, we aimed to prospectively validate FibroTest (FT) and ActiTest (AT) as noninvasive serum biochemical markers for assessment of the degree of hepatic fibrosis and necroinflammatory activity respectively, in pediatric patients with chronic HCV infection and compare them to liver biopsy.

Methods: Fifty patients, aged 2 to 18 years, with chronic HCV infection were prospectively enrolled. Two assessments were carried out, within 24-h duration, one of a liver biopsy specimen and the other FT and AT measured in serum sample.

Findings: A highly significant linear trend and correlation were found between FT-related fibrosis and fibrosis stage by METAVIR scoring on histopathological examination. A highly significant correlation was also found between AT and necroinflammatory histological activity using METAVIR as well. The FT area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUROC) is 0.97, SE=0.02 which can diagnose patients with mild stage of fibrosis, thus discriminating them from those with no (or minimal) fibrosis. The AT can successfully discriminate between patients with moderate activity and those with mild activity with AUROC=0.93, SE=0.06.

Conclusion: FT and AT are potential noninvasive methods for assessment of hepatic fibrosis and necroinflammatory activity in pediatric patients with chronic HCV infection in comparison with liver biopsy.

Publication types

  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Biomarkers / blood
  • Blood Chemical Analysis / methods*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Egypt
  • Female
  • Hepatitis C, Chronic / complications*
  • Humans
  • Liver Cirrhosis / blood*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / pathology*
  • Liver Cirrhosis / virology
  • Male
  • Prospective Studies


  • Biomarkers