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In vitro and in vivo replication capacity of the precore region defective hepatitis B virus variants

In vitro and in vivo replication capacity of the precore region defective hepatitis B virus variants

Journal of Hepatology 13(Suppl. 4): S68

Although the precore region defective hepatitis B virus variants have been implicated in chronic liver disease and fulminant hepatitis, our knowledge on the molecular biology of these variants is still limited. Using an in vitro transfection assay, we confirmed the replication competent but HBeAg-negative nature of the major variants containing a TAG stop codon in the distal precore region associated with one or two point mutations. Transfection of the two-point-mutated variant into a chimpanzee induced serological responses including anti-HBc and anti-HBs. Interestingly, anti-HBe response was found in the absence of HBeAg antigenemia, suggesting that anti-HBe can be stimulated by degraded HBc. Using the rabbit reticulocyte system the possible effect of the different precore region mutations on the expression of HBcAg from precore- and core-mRNAs was also studied.

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Accession: 031856260

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PMID: 1668333

DOI: 10.1016/0168-8278(91)90028-a

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