Changes in serum hyaluronic acid (HA) in 35 patients treated with interferon (IFN) were studied and the histological change in fibrosis was analysed. Serum HA levels and hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA were followed from the start of therapy to 12 months after completion of treatment. Histological changes in pre- and post-treatment liver biopsies were assessed using a modified Knodell's scoring system. The serum levels of HA (r = 0.79; P < 0.0001) correlated with the degree of fibrosis more closely than with that of amino terminal peptides of type III procollagen (PIIIP; r = 0.45; P < 0.05) or type IV collagen (IV-C; r = 0.42; P < 0.05). Only complete responders (CR) had a significant decrease in serum levels of HA and IV-C (P < 0.05), in parallel with histological improvement (P < 0.01). Neither partial responders (PR) nor non-responders (NR) had significant changes in histological scores and in serum levels of fibrotic markers. Significant differences were observed between CR and NR, both in HA levels (P < 0.01) and PIIIP levels (P < 0.05) 12 months after the cessation of treatment. These results suggest that serum Ha is an indicator of the extent of fibrosis in chronic hepatitis C. Serial determinations of serum HA levels may be of use for monitoring the histological response of hepatic fibrosis to IFN treatment in chronic hepatitis C.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology (Australia)|
|Publication status||Published - 1996|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes