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Ammar Hamza Abbas*, Dr. Mayada Noori Iqbal and Dr. Leith Abdul Hussein Abdullah


Background: The interleukin 17 is usually linked to tissue damage in autoimmune disorders and bacterial and fungal infections. In both chronic Hepatitis B and Hepatitis C Virus infections, some reports show a close relationship between activation of Th17 lymphocytes and the extent of hepatic damage instigated by the antiviral immune response. Vitamin D deficiency has been often described in persons with chronic liver diseases. The strong Immunomodulatory effects of Calcitriol (active form of vitamin D) in vitro, suggested a possible therapeutic benefit in chronic hepatitis B infection and chronic hepatitis C cases. Aims: to investigate the sera levels of Interleukin-17 and Vitamin D3 (as Calcitriol) in viral hepatitis patients and determine the relationships between these biomarkers. Methods: Blood samples were taken from 70 chronic viral hepatitis patients and 35 healthy controls. The patients group consisted of 34 chronic HBV cases and 36 chronic HCV cases. All samples were quantified for (interleukin-17 and calcitriol) by sandwich Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Non-parametric statistical tests (Kolmogorov-Smirnov test and Mann–Whitney test) were used by employing SPSS statistical software. Results: Results revealed that the mean of interleukin-17 sera of patients was (64.74ng/L) while it was (90.9ng/L) in controls with significant difference at (P<0.05). Furthermore, there was a highly significant difference (P<0.01) between the HBV and HCV groups, with means of (36.9ng/L and 70.1 ng/L) respectively. The mean of patients’ serum calcitriol was significantly lower (P<0.01) than the controls’ (79.05 and 113.3 pmol/L, respectively). The mean of calcitriol levels in HBV group was (44.88pmol/L), which is significantly lower (P<0.01) than the mean of HCV group (92.2pmol/L). There was a highly significant positive relationship between 1,25 (OH)2D3 (Calcitriol) and interleukin-17 at p-value (p< 0.01). Conclusion: serum levels of interleukin-17 were low in patients but were higher in HCV patients than in HBV patients. Calcitriol and interleukin-17 are strongly correlated in a positive manner, which implies that Vitamin D3 had a suppressive effect on interleukin-17.

Keywords: interleukin-17, HBV, HCV, Vitamin D3, calcitriol, viral hepatitis.

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