Hepatitis C

Restoring natural immunity against cancers

Scientists at the Institut Pasteur and Inserm have successfully increased the infiltration of immune cells into tumors, thus inducing the immune system to block tumor growth. In an article published in Nature Im ...

Jun 17, 2015
popularity 190 comments 0

Hepatitis C is an infectious disease affecting primarily the liver, caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). The infection is often asymptomatic, but chronic infection can lead to scarring of the liver and ultimately to cirrhosis, which is generally apparent after many years. In some cases, those with cirrhosis will go on to develop liver failure, liver cancer or life-threatening esophageal and gastric varices.

HCV is spread primarily by blood-to-blood contact associated with intravenous drug use, poorly sterilized medical equipment and transfusions. An estimated 130–170 million people worldwide are infected with hepatitis C. The existence of hepatitis C (originally "non-A non-B hepatitis") was postulated in the 1970s and proven in 1989. It is not known to cause disease in other animals.

The virus persists in the liver in about 85% of those infected. This persistent infection can be treated with medication; peginterferon and ribavirin are the current standard therapy. Overall, between 50–80% of people treated are cured. Those who develop cirrhosis or liver cancer may require a liver transplant. Hepatitis C is the leading cause of liver transplantation though the virus usually recurs after transplantation. No vaccine against hepatitis C is currently available.

This text uses material from Wikipedia licensed under CC BY-SA

Latest Spotlight News

Longer acquaintance levels the romantic playing field

Partners who become romantically involved soon after meeting tend to be more similar in physical attractiveness than partners who get together after knowing each other for a while, according to new findings ...

First-ever possible treatments for MERS

As the South Korean epidemic of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) continues unabated, researchers have raced to find treatments for the deadly virus, which has killed more than 400 people since it was ...

New strategies against rare, fatal lung syndrome

Hermansky-Pudlak syndrome (HPS) patients suffer symptoms including albinism, visual impairment, and slow blood clotting, but what makes some versions of the genetic condition fatal is that patients with some ...

How your brain knows it's summer

Researchers led by Toru Takumi at the RIKEN Brain Science Institute in Japan have discovered a key mechanism underlying how animals keep track of the seasons. The study, published in Proceedings of the Na ...