Federal University of Para, Institute of Biological Sciences, Virus Laboratory, Belém, Pará, Brazil; Hospital Santa Casa de Misericórdia do Pará Foundation, Belém, Pará, Brazil.
The present paper investigated possible correlations between the clinical presentation of hepatitis B and the TNF-α -308G/A, IFN-γ +874A/T, TGF-beta1 -509C/T, and IL-10 -1081A/G polymorphisms and associated serum levels of these cytokines.
Fifty-three hepatitis patients were selected and divided into two groups: A - inactive (n=30) and B - chronic hepatitis/cirrhosis (n=23). The control group consisted of 100 subjects who were positive for anti-HBc and anti-HBs. The serum concentrations of the cytokines were determined by immunoenzymatic assays. The polymorphisms of the cytokines genes were assessed by PCR and PCR-SSP.
The mean serum levels of IFN-γ of the control group were significantly higher than those of groups A and B, whereas the mean levels TGF-beta1 were significantly higher in groups A and B in comparison with the control. In the case of IL-10, the mean serum level recorded in the control group was significantly higher than that of group B. The TNF-α -308AG genotype was considerably more frequent in group B (43.3%) than the control (14.4%).
Higher serum levels of IFN-γ and TGF-beta1 were associated with chronic hepatitis B, and lower serum levels of IL-10 were found in patients with the active disease. Furthermore the presence of allele A of the TNF-α -308 polymorphism suggest a risk of the progressive disease.