Hepatitis B virus remains a major global health problem with 257 million chronically infected individuals worldwide; of whom approximately 20 million are co‐infected with hepatitis delta viral; a new, scalable cell culture system; that allows for detailing investigation of how host cells respond to infection with hepatitis B and delta virus.
Hepatitis B virus causes an acute illness that is usually rapidly cleared by adults with intact immune systems; but young children and people with HIV are at particular risk of chronic Hepatitis B virus infection; which can lead to cirrhosis or cancer of the liver; Infection with HBV also renders a person vulnerable to infection with HDV; which can cause acute liver failure and/or accelerate the progression to cirrhosis or cancer.
Hepatitis delta viral
But the viruses affect the cells they infect would assist in the development of drugs to combat or even cure infection, but HBV and HDV only infect liver cells (hepatocytes) from humans and chimpanzees; Such cells are difficult to obtain, and when grown outside the body in cell culture; they undergo a process called de-differentiation.
But the tissues have showing that specializing cell types sometimes require the support of other types of cells in order to maintain their differentiated status; Hepatocytes make up the majority of cells in the liver; but the tissue also contains many other cell types; which are collectively referring to as non-parenchymal cells; HBV hijacks the cell’s protein making machinery to make viral proteins; and HDV co-opts HBV proteins to assemble itself.
Therefore, HDV can only reproduce when it infects cells at the same time as HBV or in cells already chronically infecting with HBV (super-infection); The researchers found that both of these scenarios can occur in SACC-PHH; even when the culture system has been scaling down to tiny 384 microwell culture plates a development that makes the system.
HBV/HDV co-infection also failed to activate defense pathways in the hepatocytes of most human donors studied, but one donor showed innate immune activation upon co-infection; indicating a person’s genetic makeup may influence their ability to combat the infection; high-throughput SACC-PHH platform is a unique resource for investigating hepatotropic pathogens; and that our data will help advance understanding persistent infections by HBV and HDV.