Genome-free hepatitis B virion levels in patient sera as a potential marker to monitor response to antiviral therapy

L. Luckenbaugh, K. M. Kitrinos, W. E. Delaney, Jianming Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

37 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Complete virions of hepatitis B virus (HBV) contain a DNA genome that is enclosed in a capsid composed of the HBV core antigen (HBcAg), which is in turn surrounded by a lipid envelope studded with viral surface antigens (HBsAg). In addition, HBV-infected cells release subviral particles composed of HBsAg only (HBsAg 'spheres' and 'filaments') or HBsAg enveloping HBcAg but devoid of viral DNA ('empty virions'). The hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg), a soluble antigen related to HBcAg, is also secreted in some HBV-infected patients. The goals of this study were to explore the levels of empty virions in HBV-infected patients before and during therapy with the nucleotide analog tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) that inhibits HBV DNA synthesis and the relationships of empty virions to complete virions, HBsAg and HBeAg. HBV DNA, HBcAg and HBsAg levels were determined in serum samples from 21 patients chronically infected with HBV and enrolled in clinical TDF studies. Serum levels of empty virions were found to exceed levels of DNA-containing virions, often by ≥100-fold. Levels of both empty and complete virions varied and were related to the HBeAg status. When HBV DNA replication was suppressed by TDF, empty virion levels remained unchanged in most but were decreased (to the limit of detection) in some patients who also experienced significant decrease or loss of serum HBsAg. In conclusion, empty virions are present in the serum of chronic hepatitis B patients at high levels and may be useful in monitoring response to antiviral therapy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)561-570
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Viral Hepatitis
Volume22
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

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Hepatitis B
Virion
Antiviral Agents
Hepatitis B virus
Hepatitis B Surface Antigens
Genome
Tenofovir
Serum
Hepatitis B e Antigens
Therapeutics
Antigens
DNA
Hepatitis B Core Antigens
Viral Antigens
Capsid
Viral DNA
Chronic Hepatitis B
Surface Antigens
Virus Replication
DNA Replication

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Hepatology
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology

Cite this

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abstract = "Complete virions of hepatitis B virus (HBV) contain a DNA genome that is enclosed in a capsid composed of the HBV core antigen (HBcAg), which is in turn surrounded by a lipid envelope studded with viral surface antigens (HBsAg). In addition, HBV-infected cells release subviral particles composed of HBsAg only (HBsAg 'spheres' and 'filaments') or HBsAg enveloping HBcAg but devoid of viral DNA ('empty virions'). The hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg), a soluble antigen related to HBcAg, is also secreted in some HBV-infected patients. The goals of this study were to explore the levels of empty virions in HBV-infected patients before and during therapy with the nucleotide analog tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) that inhibits HBV DNA synthesis and the relationships of empty virions to complete virions, HBsAg and HBeAg. HBV DNA, HBcAg and HBsAg levels were determined in serum samples from 21 patients chronically infected with HBV and enrolled in clinical TDF studies. Serum levels of empty virions were found to exceed levels of DNA-containing virions, often by ≥100-fold. Levels of both empty and complete virions varied and were related to the HBeAg status. When HBV DNA replication was suppressed by TDF, empty virion levels remained unchanged in most but were decreased (to the limit of detection) in some patients who also experienced significant decrease or loss of serum HBsAg. In conclusion, empty virions are present in the serum of chronic hepatitis B patients at high levels and may be useful in monitoring response to antiviral therapy.",
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Genome-free hepatitis B virion levels in patient sera as a potential marker to monitor response to antiviral therapy. / Luckenbaugh, L.; Kitrinos, K. M.; Delaney, W. E.; Hu, Jianming.

In: Journal of Viral Hepatitis, Vol. 22, No. 6, 01.01.2015, p. 561-570.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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