- Volume 16 Issue 17
Background: Egypt has the highest prevalence of HCV infection in the world (~14.7%). Around 10-15% of HCV-infected persons will advance to cirrhosis within the first 20 years. The incidence of HCC is expected to grow in the next two decades, largely due to HCV related cirrhosis, and detection of HCC at an early stage is critical for a favorable clinical outcome. No simple reliable non-invasive marker has been available till now. B2M, a non-glycosylated polypeptide composed of 99 amino acids, is one of the components of HLA class I molecules on the surfaces of all nucleated cells. It has been reported that the level of serum B2M is elevated in patients with chronic hepatitis C and HCV-related HCC when compared to HCV-negative patients or healthy donors. Determining the clinical utility of serum B2M as a marker for disease progression in Egyptian patients with HCV related chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma was the aim of the present study. Materials and Methods: In this analytical cross sectional study 92 participants were included in 4 equal groups: Group (1) non cirrhotic chronic HCV; Group (2) HCV related liver cirrhosis; Group (3) HCC on top of HCV,; and Group (4) healthy controls. History taking, clinical examination, routine labs and abdominal ultrasound were conducted for all patients, PCR and Metavir scores for group (1) patients, and triphasic CT abdomen and AFP for Group (3) patients. B2M levels were measured in serum with a fully-automated IMX system. Results: The mean serum B2M level of Group (1) was
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