Background: Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) haplogroups have been associated with advanced liver fibrosis and cirrhosis in patients coinfected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV). Our aim was to determine whether mtDNA haplogroups are associated with liver-related events (LREs) in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients.
Methods: We carried out a retrospective cohort study in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients who were potential candidates for therapy with interferon and ribavirin (IFN/Rib) between 2000 and 2009. The primary endpoint was the occurrence of LREs (decompensation or hepatocellular carcinoma). mtDNA genotyping was performed using the Sequenom MassARRAY platform. We used Fine and Gray proportional hazards model to test the association between mtDNA haplogroups and LREs, considering death as a competitive risk.
Results: The study population comprised 243 patients, of whom 40 had advanced fibrosis or cirrhosis. After a median follow-up of 7.7 years, 90 patients treated with IFN/Rib achieved sustained viral response (SVR), 18 patients had LREs, and 11 patients died. Patients with haplogroup H had lower cumulative incidence than patients with other haplogroups (p = 0.012). However, patients with haplogroup T had higher cumulative incidence than patients with other haplogroups (p = 0.074). In the multivariate analysis, haplogroup T was associated with an increased hazard of developing LREs [adjusted subhazard ratio (aSHR) = 3.56 (95% CI 1.13;11.30); p = 0.030]; whereas haplogroup H was not associated with lower hazard of LREs [aSHR = 0.36 (95% CI 0.10;1.25); p = 0.105]. When we excluded patients who achieved SVR during follow-up, we obtained similar SHR values.
Conclusions: European mitochondrial haplogroups may influence the natural history of chronic hepatitis C.
Keywords: Chronic hepatitis C; Cirrhosis; HIV; Liver-related outcomes; Mitochondria; mtDNA haplogroups.
Conflict of interest statement
The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
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