Immunohistochemical comparative study of fibrosis and biliary ductular reaction in alcoholic and viral chronic hepatitis

Vol. 51 No. 2, 2010


I. Egyed-Zsigmond, I. Jung, Ileana Egyed-Zsigmond, Gabriella Marton, Simona Gurzu, T. Mezei

Our study includes 102 cases of liver biopsy previously diagnosed with chronic alcoholic hepatitis and also B and C viral hepatitis. In these cases, we analyzed the extension of fibrosis with two different methods. First, we evaluated fibrosis with the subjective Knodell score; secondly, we used digital image analysis to achieve this. We also used immunohistochemical methods to mark those cells positive at Smooth Muscle Actin (SMA) and Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein (GFAP). We have observed that the extension of fibrosis was most predominant in cases with B viral chronic hepatitis, while the number of cells responsible of fibrosis (stellate cells, myofibroblasts) was highest in C viral chronic hepatitis. These differences help clinician to divide patients into those who may be treated with interferon and those treatable with antiviral therapy. We observed ductular reaction (as shown by cytokeratin 7 immunostaining) within the lobular structure more frequently in alcohol related chronic hepatitis, whilst in C viral chronic hepatitis this reaction was more readily seen in portal spaces. We have concluded that patients with C viral hepatitis can benefit most from a correctly indicated hepatic biopsy since in these cases the lesions might be observed in an early and potentially curable phase.

Corresponding author: Emeric Egyed-Zsigmond, MD, PhD, e-mail:

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