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Reuters Health Information (2007-12-04): Serum markers track hepatic fibrosis in HIV/HCV


Serum markers track hepatic fibrosis in HIV/HCV

Last Updated: 2007-12-04 15:26:03 -0400 (Reuters Health)

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Serum levels of tissue inhibitors of matrix metalloproteinases (TIMP-1) and hyaluronic acid appear useful in assessing the degree of hepatic fibrosis in patients with HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV) coinfection, according to Spanish researchers.

In the November 1st issue of the Journal of Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndromes, Dr. Maria Larrousse and colleagues at the University of Barcelona note that a variety of serum markers have been associated with liver fibrosis in patients with HCV infection in the absence of HIV.

To further evaluate their predictive value in HIV-infected patients with chronic HCV, the researchers studied serum samples taken from 119 patients at liver biopsy prior to HCV therapy.

Among markers positively and significantly correlated with fibrosis were metalloproteinases 1 and 2, TIMP-1 and hyaluronic acid.

Multivariate analysis demonstrated that TIMP-1 and hyaluronic acid were independently associated with fibrosis. Using them in combination showed a correlation with liver fibrosis, yielding a sensitivity of 72.9% and a specificity of 83.1%.

"These parameters may become a noninvasive alternative to liver biopsy when the degree of liver fibrosis needs to be estimated," the investigators conclude.

J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr 2007;46:304-311.

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