Int J Biol Sci 2016; 12(11):1357-1362. doi:10.7150/ijbs.16220

Research Paper

IL28B SNP rs12979860 is the Critical Predictor for Sustained Viral Response in Chinese Children Aged 1 to 6 Years with Chronic Hepatitis C

Yan-Wei Zhong1*✉, Hong-Fei Zhang1*, Yan-Min Shi2*, Yong-Li Li1, Fang Chu1, Zhi-Qiang Xu1, Da-Wei Chen1, Yu Gan1, Fu-Chuan Wang1, Mei-Lei Gu1, Yi Dong1, Shi-Shu Zhu1, Ce Shi1, Hua-Hao Fan1, Xiu-Chang Zhang2✉, Min Zhang1✉

1. Institute of Infectious Diseases, pediatric liver disease therapy and research center, Xisihuan mid-road No.100, Beijing 302 Hospital, Beijing, China.
2. HeBei North University, Changqing road No.36, Zhangjiakou, China.
*These authors contributed equally to this work.


Clinical data on children with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) remain extremely limited. This study investigated sustained virologic response (SVR) to alfa-interferon 2b plus RBV treatment in children aged 1-6 years with unsafe injection-acquired CHC. 154 children with CHC aged 1 to 6 years were enrolled, 101 of them were male (65.6%) and 53 were female (34.4%), and they were treated with alfa-interferon at a dose of 1-5 MIU/m2 3 times weekly plus oral RBV (15 mg/kg/day) for 48 weeks. 57(39.3 %) of them were genotype 1b, 73(50.3%) were genotypes 2a, 15(10.3%) were undecided type. SVR was achieved in 53 of 57(93.0%) patients with genotype 1b, in 72 (98.6%) of 73 with genotype 2a, 15(100.0%) of 15 with undecided type. There was no significant statistical difference in SVR between male and female (98.0% vs 94.3%, p=0.340), genotype 2a and those with genotype 1b(98.6% vs 93.0%, p=0.160), ALT>40U/L group and ALT≤40U/L group(96.7% vs 96.8%, p=1.000), AST>40U/L group and AST≤40U/L group(95.9% vs 98.2%, p=0.654) as well as lower baseline viral load group (<6×105 IU/ml) and higher baseline viral load group(≥6×105 IU/ml)(97.3% vs 95.3%, p=0.916). Leucopenia, neutropenia, hemoglobin concentration decrease, fever, platelet count decrease and rash were 8.4%, 69.5%, 24.0%, 50.6%, 1.9% and 4.5%, respectively. And only 12(7.8%) individuals developed thyroid autoantibodies. The SVR was higher in patients with IL-28B genotype C/C than C/T (99.0% vs 80%, p=0.002). Compared with HCV viral genotype, ALT level and baseline viral load, IL-28B rs12979860 is more suitable for predicting antiviral efficacy in children with CHC. It is inappropriate to take the increase of ALT level as an essential indicator for antiviral treatment in children aged 1-6 years.

Keywords: chronic hepatitis C, IL-28B rs12979860

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How to cite this article:
Zhong YW, Zhang HF, Shi YM, Li YL, Chu F, Xu ZQ, Chen DW, Gan Y, Wang FC, Gu ML, Dong Y, Zhu SS, Shi C, Fan HH, Zhang XC, Zhang M. IL28B SNP rs12979860 is the Critical Predictor for Sustained Viral Response in Chinese Children Aged 1 to 6 Years with Chronic Hepatitis C. Int J Biol Sci 2016; 12(11):1357-1362. doi:10.7150/ijbs.16220. Available from