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Tohoku J Exp Med. 2004 May;203(1):53-7.

The role of beta2 microglobulin levels in monitoring chronic hepatitis B.

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Clinical Microbiology Laboratory, International Moris Sinasi Children's Hospital, Manisa, Turkey.


Beta2 microglobulin is one of the domains of the histocompatibility class I human leukocyte antigen (HLA) antigen. In hepatitis infection the presentation of the viral antigen on the hepatocyte in the presence of class I HLA antigens plays a significant role in the elimination of the virus. The aim of the study was to estimate the serum beta2 microglobulin levels in cases of chronic hepatitis B infection. Serum beta2 microglobulin levels were assessed in 65 cases with chronic hepatitis B infection including 29 pediatric and 36 adult patients as the study group and in 30 cases as seronegative control group. Beta2 microglobulin level was found significantly higher in chronic active Hepatitis B virus (HBV) patients compared to the asymptomatic HBV carriers and also in the chronic active HBV patients compared to control group. We are of the opinion that beta2 microglobulin concentration is an indicator for monitoring chronic active HBV infections at the asymptomatic hepatitis B virus carrier patients, thus would lead to early initiation of Interferon (IFN) treatment and to monitor the effectiveness of the therapy.

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