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Changes in biomarkers of liver disease during successful combination antiretroviral therapy in HIV-HCV-coinfected individuals.

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Rohrbach Janine, Stickel Felix, Schmid Patrick, Thormann Wolfgang, Kovari Helen, Scherrer Alexandra, Günthard Huldrych F, Vuichard Danielle, Cavassini Matthias, Ambrosioni Juan, Bernasconi Enos, Furrer Hansjakob, Rauch Andri,
Project Swiss HIV Cohort Study (SHCS)
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Antiviral therapy
Volume (Issue) 19(2)
Page(s) 149 - 59
Title of proceedings Antiviral therapy
DOI 10.3851/imp2686

Open Access

Type of Open Access Publisher (Gold Open Access)


We investigated changes in biomarkers of liver disease in HIV-HCV-coinfected individuals during successful combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) compared to changes in biomarker levels during untreated HIV infection and to HIV-monoinfected individuals. Non-invasive biomarkers of liver disease (hyaluronic acid [HYA], aspartate aminotransferase-to-platelet ratio index [APRI], Fibrosis-4 [FIB-4] index and cytokeratin-18 [CK-18]) were correlated with liver histology in 49 HIV-HCV-coinfected patients. Changes in biomarkers over time were then assessed longitudinally in HIV-HCV-coinfected patients during successful cART (n=58), during untreated HIV-infection (n=59), and in HIV-monoinfected individuals (n=17). The median follow-up time was 3.4 years on cART. All analyses were conducted before starting HCV treatment. Non-invasive biomarkers of liver disease correlated significantly with the histological METAVIR stage (P<0.002 for all comparisons). The mean ±sd area under the receiver operating characteristic (AUROC) curve values for advanced fibrosis (≥F3 METAVIR) for HYA, APRI, FIB-4 and CK-18 were 0.86 ±0.05, 0.84 ±0.08, 0.80 ±0.09 and 0.81 ±0.07, respectively. HYA, APRI and CK-18 levels were higher in HIV-HCV-coinfected compared to HIV-monoinfected patients (P<0.01). In the first year on cART, APRI and FIB-4 scores decreased (-35% and -33%, respectively; P=0.1), mainly due to the reversion of HIV-induced thrombocytopaenia, whereas HYA and CK-18 levels remained unchanged. During long-term cART, there were only small changes (<5%) in median biomarker levels. Median biomarker levels changed <3% during untreated HIV-infection. Overall, 3 patients died from end-stage liver disease, and 10 from other causes. Biomarkers of liver disease highly correlated with fibrosis in HIV-HCV-coinfected individuals and did not change significantly during successful cART. These findings suggest a slower than expected liver disease progression in many HIV-HCV-coinfected individuals, at least during successful cART.