Serum levels of hepatitis C virus core antigen as a marker of infection and response to therapy

Roberta Soffredini, Maria Grazia Rumi, Maria Luisa Parravicini, Guido Ronchi, Ersilio Del Ninno, Antonio Russo, Massimo Colombo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

OBJECTIVES: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) core antigen is a recently developed marker of hepatitis C infection. We compared the predictive power of HCV core antigen with reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and branched DNA assay for HCV-RNA as markers of infection and response to interferon therapy. METHODS: Four hundred and forty-four sera from 111 patients (65 men, 52 yr) with chronic hepatitis C, receiving ribavirin together with standard interferon (n = 61) or pegylated interferon (n = 50) were retrospectively investigated. RESULTS: Pretreatment, RT-PCR, branched DNA (median 621,887 IU/ml), and HCV core antigen (median 57 pg/ml) gave positive results in 100%, 99%, and 94% of the sera; the correlation between HCV core antigen and branched DNA was 0.75. The median HCV RNA level among the 7 of 111 (6%) patients that had a negative core Ag result was 15,016 IU/ml. Pretreatment levels of HCV core antigen were significantly lower in the 41 patients with a sustained virological response than in the 39 relapsers and 31 nonresponders (17 pg/ml, 114 pg/ml, 58 pg/ml; p-value 0.005). Independently of treatment schedule, wk 12 more than 2 log 10 reduction of viremia or a negative result for HCV core antigen had 100% negative predictive value (NPV) for a response to therapy compared to 94% for negative RT-PCR. The positive predictive value (PPV) of HCV core antigen and branched DNA was only 47% and 48%. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, the HCV core antigen is a less sensitive test of HCV viremia than HCV-RNA assays and is competitive with the bDNA assay as an early predictor of a nonresponse.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1738-1743
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Gastroenterology
Volume99
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2004

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Hepacivirus
Antigens
Infection
Serum
Therapeutics
Branched DNA Signal Amplification Assay
Interferons
Reverse Transcription
Viremia
RNA
Polymerase Chain Reaction
DNA
Ribavirin
Chronic Hepatitis C
Hepatitis C
Appointments and Schedules

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology

Cite this

Serum levels of hepatitis C virus core antigen as a marker of infection and response to therapy. / Soffredini, Roberta; Rumi, Maria Grazia; Parravicini, Maria Luisa; Ronchi, Guido; Del Ninno, Ersilio; Russo, Antonio; Colombo, Massimo.

In: American Journal of Gastroenterology, Vol. 99, No. 9, 09.2004, p. 1738-1743.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Soffredini, Roberta ; Rumi, Maria Grazia ; Parravicini, Maria Luisa ; Ronchi, Guido ; Del Ninno, Ersilio ; Russo, Antonio ; Colombo, Massimo. / Serum levels of hepatitis C virus core antigen as a marker of infection and response to therapy. In: American Journal of Gastroenterology. 2004 ; Vol. 99, No. 9. pp. 1738-1743.
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abstract = "OBJECTIVES: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) core antigen is a recently developed marker of hepatitis C infection. We compared the predictive power of HCV core antigen with reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and branched DNA assay for HCV-RNA as markers of infection and response to interferon therapy. METHODS: Four hundred and forty-four sera from 111 patients (65 men, 52 yr) with chronic hepatitis C, receiving ribavirin together with standard interferon (n = 61) or pegylated interferon (n = 50) were retrospectively investigated. RESULTS: Pretreatment, RT-PCR, branched DNA (median 621,887 IU/ml), and HCV core antigen (median 57 pg/ml) gave positive results in 100{\%}, 99{\%}, and 94{\%} of the sera; the correlation between HCV core antigen and branched DNA was 0.75. The median HCV RNA level among the 7 of 111 (6{\%}) patients that had a negative core Ag result was 15,016 IU/ml. Pretreatment levels of HCV core antigen were significantly lower in the 41 patients with a sustained virological response than in the 39 relapsers and 31 nonresponders (17 pg/ml, 114 pg/ml, 58 pg/ml; p-value 0.005). Independently of treatment schedule, wk 12 more than 2 log 10 reduction of viremia or a negative result for HCV core antigen had 100{\%} negative predictive value (NPV) for a response to therapy compared to 94{\%} for negative RT-PCR. The positive predictive value (PPV) of HCV core antigen and branched DNA was only 47{\%} and 48{\%}. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, the HCV core antigen is a less sensitive test of HCV viremia than HCV-RNA assays and is competitive with the bDNA assay as an early predictor of a nonresponse.",
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AU - Soffredini, Roberta

AU - Rumi, Maria Grazia

AU - Parravicini, Maria Luisa

AU - Ronchi, Guido

AU - Del Ninno, Ersilio

AU - Russo, Antonio

AU - Colombo, Massimo

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N2 - OBJECTIVES: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) core antigen is a recently developed marker of hepatitis C infection. We compared the predictive power of HCV core antigen with reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and branched DNA assay for HCV-RNA as markers of infection and response to interferon therapy. METHODS: Four hundred and forty-four sera from 111 patients (65 men, 52 yr) with chronic hepatitis C, receiving ribavirin together with standard interferon (n = 61) or pegylated interferon (n = 50) were retrospectively investigated. RESULTS: Pretreatment, RT-PCR, branched DNA (median 621,887 IU/ml), and HCV core antigen (median 57 pg/ml) gave positive results in 100%, 99%, and 94% of the sera; the correlation between HCV core antigen and branched DNA was 0.75. The median HCV RNA level among the 7 of 111 (6%) patients that had a negative core Ag result was 15,016 IU/ml. Pretreatment levels of HCV core antigen were significantly lower in the 41 patients with a sustained virological response than in the 39 relapsers and 31 nonresponders (17 pg/ml, 114 pg/ml, 58 pg/ml; p-value 0.005). Independently of treatment schedule, wk 12 more than 2 log 10 reduction of viremia or a negative result for HCV core antigen had 100% negative predictive value (NPV) for a response to therapy compared to 94% for negative RT-PCR. The positive predictive value (PPV) of HCV core antigen and branched DNA was only 47% and 48%. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, the HCV core antigen is a less sensitive test of HCV viremia than HCV-RNA assays and is competitive with the bDNA assay as an early predictor of a nonresponse.

AB - OBJECTIVES: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) core antigen is a recently developed marker of hepatitis C infection. We compared the predictive power of HCV core antigen with reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and branched DNA assay for HCV-RNA as markers of infection and response to interferon therapy. METHODS: Four hundred and forty-four sera from 111 patients (65 men, 52 yr) with chronic hepatitis C, receiving ribavirin together with standard interferon (n = 61) or pegylated interferon (n = 50) were retrospectively investigated. RESULTS: Pretreatment, RT-PCR, branched DNA (median 621,887 IU/ml), and HCV core antigen (median 57 pg/ml) gave positive results in 100%, 99%, and 94% of the sera; the correlation between HCV core antigen and branched DNA was 0.75. The median HCV RNA level among the 7 of 111 (6%) patients that had a negative core Ag result was 15,016 IU/ml. Pretreatment levels of HCV core antigen were significantly lower in the 41 patients with a sustained virological response than in the 39 relapsers and 31 nonresponders (17 pg/ml, 114 pg/ml, 58 pg/ml; p-value 0.005). Independently of treatment schedule, wk 12 more than 2 log 10 reduction of viremia or a negative result for HCV core antigen had 100% negative predictive value (NPV) for a response to therapy compared to 94% for negative RT-PCR. The positive predictive value (PPV) of HCV core antigen and branched DNA was only 47% and 48%. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, the HCV core antigen is a less sensitive test of HCV viremia than HCV-RNA assays and is competitive with the bDNA assay as an early predictor of a nonresponse.

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