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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Integration of hepatitis B virus DNA into chromosomal DNA during acute hepatitis B.

AIM: To examine the serum from black African patients with acute hepatitis B to ascertain if integrants of viral DNA can be detected in fragments of cellular DNA leaking from damaged hepatocytes into the circulation. METHODS: DNA was extracted from the sera of five patients with uncomplicated acute hepatitis B and one with fulminant disease. Two subgenomic PCRs designed to amplify the complete genome of HBV were used and the resulting amplicons were cloned and sequenced. RESULTS: HBV and chromosomal DNA were amplified from the sera of all the patients. In one patient with uncomplicated disease, HBV DNA was integrated into host chromosome 7 q11.23 in the WBSCR1 gene. The viral DNA comprised 200 nucleotides covering the S and X genes in opposite orientation, with a 1 169 nucleotide deletion. The right virus/host junction was situated at nucleotide 1,774 in the cohesive overlap region of the viral genome, at a preferred topoisomerase I cleavage motif. The chromosomal DNA was not rearranged. The patient made a full recovery and seroconverted to anti-HBs- and anti-HBe-positivity. Neither HBV nor chromosomal DNA could be amplified from his serum at that time. CONCLUSION: Integration of viral DNA into chromosomal DNA may occur rarely during acute hepatitis B and, with clonal propagation of the integrant, might play a role in hepatocarcinogenesis.[1]


  1. Integration of hepatitis B virus DNA into chromosomal DNA during acute hepatitis B. Kimbi, G.C., Kramvis, A., Kew, M.C. World J. Gastroenterol. (2005) [Pubmed]
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