Effect of α-interferon on hepatitis B virus-specific cytotoxic T cells

Authors

  • ETSUKO ISONO,

  • KATSUMI YAMAUCHI,

    Corresponding author
      Dr Katsumi Yamauchi, Division of Medicine, Institute of Gastroenterology, Tokyo Women's Medical College, 8-1 Kawada-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan.
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  • IKUKO HARUTA,

  • YUMIKO KAMOGAWA,

  • NAOAKI HAYASHI


Dr Katsumi Yamauchi, Division of Medicine, Institute of Gastroenterology, Tokyo Women's Medical College, 8-1 Kawada-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo, Japan.

Abstract

Abstract To study the mechanism of the effects of α-interferon (α-IFN) on chronic hepatitis B, we examined its effect on hepatitis B virus (HBV)-specific cytotoxic T cells (CTL). Using two different HBV-DNA transfected human myeloma cell lines, one expressing hepatitis B core antigen (HBcAg; C4) and the other expressing hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg; S6) as targets in cytotoxic tests in vitro, peripheral blood mononuclear cells obtained from chronic hepatitis B patients who were treated with α-IFN were examined for their cytotoxic activity against these transfectants. During the treatment with α-IFN, in association with a decline of serum alanine amino transferase levels, CTL activities were significantly reduced. An inhibition study in vitro revealed that α-IFN did not directly inhibit these CTL activities, indicating that α-IFN may inhibit the induction of CTL, and thereby may be related to the reduction of hepatocyte injury.

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