Source Department of Infectious Diseases, Institute for Viral Hepatitis, Key Laboratory of Molecular Biology for Infectious Diseases, Ministry of Education, The Second Affiliated Hospital of Chongqing Medical University, Chongqing, China.
BACKGROUND: Hepatitis C is a global health problem and represents a major cause of liver disease and socioeconomic burden. Effective antiviral therapy may prevent these complications, but the current treatment for patients with chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection does not produce sustained virologic response. Therefore, identification of the determinants of response to treatment is a high priority. A number of host and viral factors have been associated with treatment outcomes.
OBJECTIVES: To assess the associations of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNP) of the IL28B and sustained virologic response (SVR) of patients with chronic hepatitis C to PEG-interferon/ribavirin therapy.
MATERIALS AND METHODS: We searched PubMed, Medline and Cochrane Library, and found 7 eligible papers involved in this study. Then we performed a meta-analysis comparing the SVR rate at SNP of the IL28B in individuals with PEG-interferon/ribavirin therapy. Meanwhile, the SVR rate between different races and HCV genotypes was studied.
RESULTS: The sustained virologic response rate was higher in patients with the rs12979860 CC and rs8099917 TT alleles in the IL28B SNP, comparing with the rs12979860 CT, or TT and rs8099917 TG or GG. Furthermore, a higher SVR was observed in the Caucasians than in Afro-Americans (OR = 3.85, 95% CI: 3.06-4.83); the percentage of rs12979860 TT genotype was lower in Caucasians (OR = 0.25, 95% CI: 0.20-0.31) and the percentage of rs12979860 CC genotype was higher in Caucasians than that of Afro-Americans (OR = 3.45, 95% CI = 2.68-4.44). Between different HCV genotypes, the SVR was much lower in those with HCV genotype 1 than those with genotype 2/3 (OR = 0.16, 95% CI: 0.11-0.24).
CONCLUSIONS: IL28B is significantly associated with response to PEG-interferon/ribavirin therapy of patients with chronic HCV infection. Both the rs12979860 and rs8099917 alleles could be used as independent predictors of the treatment response. The rs12979860 allele in particular, is more important from our study. The polymorphism even explains part the difference in response rate between different ethnic groups and HCV genotypes.