alexa Autoimmune hepatitis


Immunome Research

Author(s): MieliVergani G, Vergani D

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Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) is an inflammatory liver disease that mainly affects females. It is characterized histologically by interface hepatitis, biochemically by increased aspartate and alanine aminotransferase levels, and serologically by the presence of autoantibodies and increased levels of immunoglobulin G. AIH affects both adults and children, and is particularly aggressive in the latter group. It is a relatively rare but devastating disease, which progresses rapidly unless immunosuppressive treatment is started promptly. With appropriate treatment 80% of patients achieve remission and long-term survival. Those patients who progress to end-stage liver disease because they are unresponsive or nonadherent to treatment, and those with fulminant liver failure (encephalopathy grade II-IV) at diagnosis, require liver transplantation. Seropositivity for smooth muscle and/or antinuclear antibodies defines type 1 AIH, while positivity for liver kidney microsomal type 1 antibodies defines type 2 AIH. The primary cause of AIH is unknown; however, considerable knowledge about the mechanisms of liver damage involved has been gathered over the past 30 years, which is likely to provide the basis for specific modes of treatment and a possible cure.

This article was published in Nat Rev Gastroenterol Hepatol. and referenced in Immunome Research

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