High resolution melting curve assay for detecting rs12979860 IL28B polymorphisms involved in response of Iranian patients to chronic hepatitis C treatment

Abolfazl Fateh, Mohammad Reza Aghasadeghi, Hossein Keyvani, Hamid Reza Mollaie, Shamsi Yari, Ali Reza Hadizade Tasbiti, Morteza Ghazanfari, Seyed Hamid Reza Monavari
Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention: APJCP 2015, 16 (5): 1873-80

BACKGROUND: A recent genome-wide association study (GWAS) on patients with chronic hepatitis C (CHC) treated with peginterferon and ribavirin (pegIFN-α/RBV) identified a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) on chromosome 19 (rs12979860) which was strongly associated with a sustained virological response (SVR). The aim of this study was twofold: to study the relationship between IL28B rs12979860 and sustained virological response (SVR) to pegIFN-α/RVB therapy among CHC patients and to detect the rs12979860 polymorphism by high resolution melting curve (HRM) assay as a simple, fast, sensitive, and inexpensive method.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: The study examined outcomes in 100 patients with chronic hepatitis C in 2 provinces of Iran from December 2011 to June 2013. Two methods were applied to detect IL28B polymorphisms: PCR-sequencing as a gold standard method and HRM as a simple, fast, sensitive, and inexpensive method.

RESULTS: The frequencies of IL28B rs12979860 CC, CT, and TT alleles in chronic hepatitis C genotype 1a patients were 10% (10/100), 35% (35/100), and 6% (6/100) and in genotype 3a were 13% (13/100), 31% (31/100), and 5% (5/100), respectively. In genotype 3a infected patients, rs12979860 (CC and CT alleles) and in genotype 1a infected patients (CC allele) were significantly associated with a sustained virological response (SVR). The SVR rates for CC, CT and TT (IL28B rs12979860) were 18%, 34% and 4%, respectively. Multiple logistic regression analysis identified two independent factors that were significantly associated with SVR: IL-28B genotype (rs 12979860 CC vs TT and CT; odds ratio [ORs], 7.86 and 4.084, respectively), and HCV subtype 1a (OR, 7.46). In the present study, an association between SVR rates and IL28B polymorphisms was observed.

CONCLUSIONS: The HRM assay described herein is rapid, inexpensive, sensitive and accurate for detecting rs12979860 alleles in CHC patients. This method can be readily adopted by any molecular diagnostic laboratory with HRM capability and will be clinically beneficial in predicting treatment response in HCV genotype 1 and 3 infected patients. In addition, it was demonstrated that CC and CT alleles in HCV-3a and the CC allele in HCV-1a were significantly associated with response to pegIFN-α/RBV treatment. The present results may help identify subjects for whom the therapy might be successful.

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