Decreased expression of toll like receptor signaling molecules in chronic HBV infected patients
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Introduction: Toll like receptors (TLRs) and their signaling molecules play important roles in microbe recognition and induction of immune responses, including production of inflammatory cytokines, against viral infections. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine expression levels of TLR signaling molecules (IRAK1, IRAK4, TRAF3, and IRF7) and the pro-inflammatory cytokines, IL-12 and IL-6 in chronic HBV infected (CHB) patients. Design: This study was performed on 60 CHB patients and 60 healthy controls and the expression of IRAK1, IRAK4, TRAF3, and IRF7 and their downstream inflammatory cytokines (IL-12 and IL-6) were evaluated by Real-Time PCR and ELISA techniques. Results: The results demonstrated that expression of IRAK4, TRAF3, and IRF7 were significantly decreased in PBMCs of CHB patients in comparison to healthy controls. Serum levels of IL-12 were significantly increased, while, IL-6 were not differ between patients and controls. Conclusions: Based on the results presented here it seems that CHB patients do not express appropriate levels of the genes in the TLRs pathway which may lead to impaired immune responses against HBV infection which is seen in the patients.