The underlying mechanisms for the ‘anti-HBc alone’ serological profile

The underlying mechanisms for the ‘anti-HBc alone’ serological profile The serological pattern, “anti-HBc alone”, characterized by the presence of antibodies against the core antigen of hepatitis B virus (anti-HBc) as the only marker of hepatitis B, is not rare in a diagnostic setting. Depending on the prevalence of HBV infection and the patient group investigated, 1–31% of positive anti-HBc results are isolated positive findings. Anti-HBc alone is frequently observed in intravenous drug addicts, HIV-infected individuals, patients who are coinfected with HBV and hepatitis C virus, and pregnant women. However, it is not clear how this profile should be interpreted. Several studies have shown that anti-HBc alone is not only compatible with acute and resolved HBV infection but also with chronic infection. The reasons for the lack of HBsAg and anti-HBs in anti-HBc-alone individuals are not clear, but several mechanisms and possibilities have been suggested that could explain this phenomenon, some of which are delineated in this article. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Archives of Virology Springer Journals

The underlying mechanisms for the ‘anti-HBc alone’ serological profile

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Publisher
Springer Vienna
Copyright
Copyright © 2010 by Springer-Verlag
Subject
Biomedicine; Infectious Diseases; Medical Microbiology ; Virology
ISSN
0304-8608
eISSN
1432-8798
D.O.I.
10.1007/s00705-009-0559-6
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The serological pattern, “anti-HBc alone”, characterized by the presence of antibodies against the core antigen of hepatitis B virus (anti-HBc) as the only marker of hepatitis B, is not rare in a diagnostic setting. Depending on the prevalence of HBV infection and the patient group investigated, 1–31% of positive anti-HBc results are isolated positive findings. Anti-HBc alone is frequently observed in intravenous drug addicts, HIV-infected individuals, patients who are coinfected with HBV and hepatitis C virus, and pregnant women. However, it is not clear how this profile should be interpreted. Several studies have shown that anti-HBc alone is not only compatible with acute and resolved HBV infection but also with chronic infection. The reasons for the lack of HBsAg and anti-HBs in anti-HBc-alone individuals are not clear, but several mechanisms and possibilities have been suggested that could explain this phenomenon, some of which are delineated in this article.

Journal

Archives of VirologySpringer Journals

Published: Feb 1, 2010

References

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