HepaptitisC Info Wanted.

DrglennK drglennk at aol.com
Tue Apr 15 13:29:02 EST 1997


HCV is a blood borne pathogen and thus is usually transmitted via
contaminated needles among drug abusers and via blood
products/transfusions. At present, the  therapy is a course of high dose
alpha-interferon.

Regarding further complications, I can't remember the current percentages
for liver cirrhosis and cancer, but I believe they are low (under 10%). A
more likely complication is the development of mixed cryoglobulinemia,
which is an autoimmune disease in which circulating immune complexes can
lead to a vasculitis in the kidneys, and in some cases an increased VLDL
level.

The virus particles are about 50 nm in diameter. HCV is a positive strand
RNA virus with a genome of about 9400 nucleotides, and belongs to the
family Flaviviridae. For a good review article on the nature of HCV, see
J. Bukh, R.H. Miller, and R.H. Purcell, Seminars in Liver Disease, 15,
41-63 (1995).




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