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Genetics and Molecular Biology

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ALMEIDA, Terezinha M.B. de; LEITAO, Regina Maria C.; CARRILHO, Flair J.  and  SONOHARA, Shigueko. Micronuclei formation in liver fibrosis samples from patients infected by hepatitis C virus. Genet. Mol. Biol. [online]. 2010, vol.33, n.3, pp.418-421.  Epub July 02, 2010. ISSN 1415-4757.

Genetic research on fibrosis outset and its progression in chronic hepatitis (CH) by hepatitis C virus (HCV) are limited. The lack of cytogenetic data led us to investigate the presence of micronuclei (MNi), as a sign of genomic damage. Hepatocytes of hepatic parenchyma from 62 cases diagnosed with CH associated with HCV and displaying different degrees of fibrosis (F1-F4) were analyzed. These data were compared to 15 cases without fibrosis (F0). Twelve healthy liver parenchyma samples were included as control. All samples were obtained from paraffin-embedded archival material. Micronucleated hepatocytes (MN-Heps) were analyzed through Feulgen/Fastgreen staining. Results showed that the rates of MN-Heps in the F4 group were statistically significant (p < 0.05) and higher than those in the control group. Like results were also obtained on comparing F4 with F0, F1, F2 and F3 cases. Conversely, differences were not significant (p > 0.05) on comparing F0, F1, F2, F3, one against the other, as well as individual versus control. Although chromosomal losses in CH were detected, it was shown that liver parenchyma with fibrosis in the initial stages (F1-F3) cannot be considered cytogenetically abnormal.

Keywords : micronuclei; hepatocytes; chronic hepatitis C; fibrosis progression; HCV-patients.

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