Hepatitis C virus evasion mechanisms from neutralizing antibodies

Lorenzo, C. D., Angus, A. G.N. and Patel, A. H. (2011) Hepatitis C virus evasion mechanisms from neutralizing antibodies. Viruses, 3(11), pp. 2280-2300. (doi: 10.3390/v3112280) (PMID:22163345) (PMCID:PMC3230852)

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Hepatitis C virus (HCV) represents a major public health problem, affecting 3% of the world’s population. The majority of infected individuals develop chronic hepatitis, which can progress to cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. To date, a vaccine is not available and current therapy is limited by resistance, adverse effects and high costs. Although it is very well established that cell-mediated immunity is necessary for viral clearance, the importance of host antibodies in clearing HCV infection is being increasingly recognized. Indeed, recent studies indicate that neutralizing antibodies are induced in the early phase of infection by patients who subsequently clear viral infection. Conversely, patients who do not clear the virus develop high titers of neutralizing antibodies during the chronic stage. Surprisingly, these antibodies are not able to control HCV infection. HCV has therefore developed mechanisms to evade immune elimination, allowing it to persist in the majority of infected individuals. A detailed understanding of the mechanisms by which the virus escapes immune surveillance is therefore necessary if novel preventive and therapeutic treatments have to be designed. This review summarizes the current knowledge of the mechanisms used by HCV to evade host neutralizing antibodies.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Angus, Dr Allan and Patel, Professor Arvind
Authors: Lorenzo, C. D., Angus, A. G.N., and Patel, A. H.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
Journal Name:Viruses
Published Online:15 November 2011
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2011 The Authors
First Published:First published in Viruses 3(11):2280-2300
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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