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Keywords:

  • hepatitis C virus;
  • interferon-λ 4;
  • IL28B;
  • pegylated interferon

Abstract

A genetic polymorphism of the newly discovered interferon-λ 4 (IFNL4) gene was associated with hepatitis C virus (HCV) clearance in individuals of African ancestry. To assess whether a dinucleotide variant of IFNL4 (ss469415590) also affected treatment outcome of antiviral therapy in Japan, we genotyped 213 patients with chronic genotype 1 HCV infection and 176 healthy subjects. The ΔG allele was associated with treatment failure [odds ratio (OR) 4.73, P = 0.019], as was the IFL3 rs8099917 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) (OR 5.06, P = 0.068). The correlation between ss469415590 and rs8099917 was high (r2 = 0.92, D′ = 0.98). Multivariate analysis revealed that the rs8099917 SNP was independently associated with treatment failure (OR 5.28, P = 0.009). Therefore, ss469415590 may be another predictive marker of antiviral therapy outcome in the Japanese population.