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Infect Dis Rep. 2013 Jun 6;5(Suppl 1):e7. doi: 10.4081/idr.2013.s1.e7. eCollection 2013.

Hepatitis C Virus and HIV Type 1 Co-Infection.

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  • 1Retroviral Genetics Division, Centre for Virus Research, Westmead Millennium Institute , Sydney, Australia.

Abstract

Around 33 million people worldwide are living with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection, and approximately 20-30% of HIV-infected individuals are also infected with Hepatitis C virus (HCV). The main form of HCV transmission is via the blood borne route; high rates of co-infection are found in intravenous drug users with HCV prevalence rates as high as 90%. Introduction of effective antiretroviral therapy (ART) has led to a significant decline in HIV-related morbidity, but at the same time the incidence of HCV related liver disease is increasing in the co-infected population. Meta analysis has revealed that individuals who are co-infected with HIV/HCV harbor three times greater risk of progression to liver disease than those infected with HCV alone. Increased risk of progression to Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS-related deaths is shown among the co-infected patients by some studies, suggesting that HCV infection may accelerate the clinical course of HIV infection. HCV may also affect the incidence of liver toxicity associated with ART, affecting the management of HIV infection. There is a lack of optimal therapeutic approaches to treat HCV infection in HIV co-infected patients. This review discusses recent literature pertaining HIV/HCV co-infection, in addition to providing a snapshot of impact of co-infection on human genome at the level of gene expression and its regulation by microRNAs (miRNAs).

KEYWORDS:

HIV; Hepatitis C Virus; antiretroviral therapy; co-infection; miRNA

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