Are Fas ligand polymorphisms associated with occult HBV infection?
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Background: Occult hepatitis B infection (OBI) is a form of hepatitis in which there is an absence of detectable HBsAg, despite the presence of HBV-DNA in the peripheral blood of patients. The main aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between polymorphisms in the -844 and IVS2nt-124 regions of the Fas ligand (FasL) gene with OBI. Material and methods: The plasma samples from 3700 blood donors were tested for HBsAg and anti-HBs by ELISA. The HBsAg-/anti-HBc+ samples were selected and screened for HBV-DNA by PCR. HBV-DNA positive samples were assigned as OBI cases and PCR-RFLP techniques were performed to examine the polymorphisms. Results: 352 (9.5%) out of 3700 blood samples were HBsAg-/anti-HBc+ and HBV-DNA was detected in 57/352 (16.1%) of HBsAg-/anti-HBc+ samples and designated as OBI patients. Our results showed that patient and control groups had no significant differences regarding the studied polymorphisms. Discussion: Based on our results it can be concluded that the functional polymorphisms in the promoter region of FasL gene are not associated with OBI.
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Medical Genetics (excl. Cancer Genetics)