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J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2005 Dec 15;40(5):538-44.

HIV infection does not affect the performance of noninvasive markers of fibrosis for the diagnosis of hepatitis C virus-related liver disease.

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  • 1Section of Gastroenterology, Boston Medical Center, Boston University, Boston, MA 02118, USA.



Noninvasive markers of hepatic fibrosis hold great promise to stage liver fibrosis and to monitor disease progression. To date, few studies have assessed the performance of the currently available markers of hepatic fibrosis in HIV-infected cohorts. The aim of the current study was to compare the diagnostic performance and characteristics of a number of noninvasive markers of hepatic fibrosis in populations of hepatitis C virus (HCV)-infected patients with and without HIV infection.


A sample of 97 subjects (40 HCV/HIV-coinfected, 57 HCV-infected) undergoing liver biopsy as part of an ongoing prospective cohort study was evaluated. Liver biopsies were assessed by a single hepatopathologist and scored according to Ishak criteria. Noninvasive markers of fibrosis studied included international normalized ratio, platelet count, aspartate aminotransferase (AST)/alanine aminotransferase ratio, AST platelet ratio index (APRI), Forns index, procollagen III N peptide, hyaluronic acid, and YKL-40.


The correlations between fibrosis markers with the stage of fibrosis and the diagnostic performance of each of the tests were similar in the groups with and without HIV infection. Although a trend to improved diagnostic performance in the HCV/HIV-coinfected group was observed, this may be related to the small sample size.


The diagnostic performance of the evaluated noninvasive markers of liver fibrosis is equivalent in HCV/HIV-coinfected and HCV-infected subjects. These tests may be of value for the clinical evaluation of HCV/HIV-coinfected patients and warrant further study.

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