Immune regulation in chronic hepatitis C virus infection

    15 Citationer (Scopus)


    The immunological result of infection with Hepatitis C virus (HCV) depends on the delicate balance between a vigorous immune response that may clear the infection, but with a risk of unspecific inflammation and, or a less inflammatory response that leads to chronic infection. In general, exhaustion and impairment of cytotoxic function of HCV-specific T cells and NK cells are found in patients with chronic HCV infection. In contrast, an increase in immune regulatory functions is found primarily in form of increased IL-10 production possibly due to increased level and function of anti-inflammatory Tregs. Thus, the major immune players during chronic HCV infection are characterized by a decrease of cytotoxic function and increase of inhibitory functions. This may be an approach to diminish intrahepatic and systemic inflammation. Finally, there has been increasing awareness of regulatory functions of epigenetic changes in chronic HCV infection. A vast amount of studies have revealed the complexity of immune regulation in chronic HCV infection, but the interplay between immune regulation in virus and host remains incompletely understood. This review provides an overview of regulatory functions of HCV-specific T cells, NK cells, Tregs, IL-10, and TGF-β, as well as epigenetic changes in the setting of chronic HCV infection.

    TidsskriftScandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology
    Udgave nummer11
    Sider (fra-til)1387-97
    Antal sider11
    StatusUdgivet - nov. 2016


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