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Abstract

Predictors of hepatitis C virus (HCV)-related liver disease posttransplantation are still unclear. The impact of HCV genotype on outcome of transplantation has been studied, but conclusions are not in agreement. The role of HCV genotype 4 on the result of liver transplantation requires further study. The aim of this study is to examine the outcome of liver transplantation for patients with HCV genotype-4 infection. The study group included 128 patients who underwent transplantation for HCV infection: 28 patients, genotype 1; 11 patients, genotype 2; 19 patients, genotype 3; and 32 patients, genotype 4. For 64 of 128 patients, genotype was known and an assessable histological specimen was available. Median interval from transplantation to biopsy was 1.92 years (range, 0.24 to 11.48 years). Twenty-six percent of HCV genotype-4 patients developed either severe fibrosis or cirrhosis versus 6.7% in the genotype non-4 group (P = .04). A statistically significant greater fibrosis progression rate was observed in genotype-4 than genotype non-4 patients. In univariate and multivariate analysis, rapid liver fibrosis was associated with the presence of HCV genotype-4 infection. In addition, donor and recipient age and graft warm ischemic time also were associated with rate of fibrosis progression. Five-year cumulative rates for the development of cirrhosis or severe liver fibrosis were 84% in genotype-4 and 24% in genotype non-4 patients (P = .02). Five-year survival rates for patients with genotypes 1, 2/3, and 4 were 72%, 80%, and 79%, respectively (P = .8). In conclusion, 5-year survival for patients who underwent transplantation for HCV genotype-4 infection was similar to that of genotype non-4 patients; however, more severe fibrosis and rapid fibrosis progression was observed after transplantation in patients with genotype-4 infection.