Reduced Expression of Human Chemokine Genes RANTES and IP-10 in Hepatitis B Virus Mediated Cirrhosis of Liver
Regulated upon Activation Normal T cell Expressed and Secreted (RANTES) and interferon gamma inducible protein 10 (IP-10), both chemokines are chemotactic for immunocompetent cells and play an important role in cell mediated antiviral defense. The objective of this work was to assess the expression pattern of RANTES and IP-10 genes in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infected patients having various disease severity. The study was performed on 79 HBV infected patients grouped into acute, inactive carriers (IC), chronic (CHB), cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) plus 41 healthy voluntary blood donors as controls. Quantification of HBV surface antigen (HBsAg) was done by a sandwich enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Conventional and real time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) were used for genotyping and determination of HBV DNA load respectively. RANTES and IP-10 mRNA expressions were evaluated by reverse transcription PCR (RT-PCR) and densitometry. Results obtained show that RANTES expression reduced significantly (p<0.0001) in cirrhosis group in comparison to controls and remain unaltered in other disease categories. Reduction in IP-10 expression was significant (p=0.006) in patients of all disease categories than controls which was most evident in cirrhosis group (p<0.0001). No association was found between the expression level of chemokines with HBV genotypes, HBsAg and HBV DNA levels in sera.
It could be concluded that reduced expression of both the chemokines might be associated with lesser infiltration of immunocompetent cells to liver to avert further damage in cirrhosis.Serum level of both RANTES and IP-10 can be considered as prognostic marker of liver cirrhosis by validation studies.
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