The pathogenesis and perpetuation of hepatocellular injury in chronic inflammatory liver disease is still unclear. Several pieces of circumstantial evidence point to the importance of antigen-specific immune responses. In chronic hepatitis B virus infection, the hepatitis B virus nucleoprotein appears to be a major target antigen for both helper and cytotoxic T lymphocytes. In autoimmune chronic active hepatitis, several autoantibodies have been identified that are associated with different disease subgroups and that may be helpful to distinguish this form of chronic active hepatitis from that caused by non-A, non-B agents. In primary biliary cirrhosis, antimitochondrial antibodies are almost invariably present and have now been characterized at the molecular level.
Does the immune response play a role in the pathogenesis of chronic liver disease? / Mondelli, M U; Manns, M; Ferrari, C. - In: ARCHIVES OF PATHOLOGY & LABORATORY MEDICINE. - ISSN 0003-9985. - 112:5(1988), p. 489-97.
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