Author(s): Fagan EA, Williams R
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Abstract In the United Kingdom and United States of America, fulminant viral hepatitis is due mainly to sporadic (non-parenteral) non-A, non-B hepatitis and hepatitis B whereas that caused by hepatitis A virus is very uncommon and by the herpes viruses remains rare. Recent advances in fulminant non-A, non-B hepatitis have come with the identification and cloning of a virus (27-34 nm) in the enteral variety (hepatitis E) which is prevalent in the Indian sub-continent, North Africa and elsewhere, especially in pregnant women. Virus-like particles (50-70 nm) with ultrastructural features similar to the togaviridae and flaviviridae have been identified in some patients with fulminant non-A, non-B hepatitis in the United Kingdom. The relation to hepatitis C virus, recently identified as a major cause of chronic post-transfusion (parenteral) non-A, non-B hepatitis, awaits serological analysis. The recent demonstration that persistence of active viral replication can occur in some cases of fulminant hepatitis types A and B using monoclonal antibody and molecular biology techniques challenges the classical views on the pathogenesis of these varieties of fulminant viral hepatitis.
This article was published in Br Med Bull
and referenced in Reproductive System & Sexual Disorders: Current Research