SerumIron and TypeHIProcollagenPeptide (PIIINP) inPatients with ChronicViralHepatitis and TheirRelation to theDiseaseActivity
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We studied thirty patients with chronic viral hepatitis (15 had hepatitis B virus and 15 had hepatitis C virus infection) and 10 normal healthy volunteers as a control group. They were investigated by procto-sigmoidoscopy, abdominal ultrasonography, liver biopsy and fasting blood samples were taken to assess, serum iron, total iron binding capacity (TTBC), serum type III procollagen peptide (PIIINP), Alanine aminotransferase (ALT), Asparate aminotransferase (AST), alkaline phosphatase and ser um bilirubin. The results did show a high level of both serum iron and PIIINP in pa tients with chronic hepatitis as compared to the control group. No correlation was found between serumiron and either PIIINPor aminotransferases, but significant cor relations were found to both alk. phos. and bilirubin. A positive correlation was found between PIIINPand ALT indicating that PIIINP a known marker for liver fibrogenesis might be a marker for disease activity, inspite of the finding of absent relation be tween serum iron and disease activity in patients with chronic viral hepatitis, the high serum levels of iron in these patients needs further studies to evaluate its clinical sig nificance.