The relationship between neopterin and hepatitis B surface antigen positivity

ÜNÜVAR S., Aslanhan H., Tanriverdi Z., Karakuş F.

PTERIDINES, vol.29, no.1, pp.1-5, 2018 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 29 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1515/pteridines-2018-0001
  • Journal Name: PTERIDINES
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.1-5
  • Keywords: hepatitis B surface antigens, immune system, interferon-gamma, liver diseases, neopterin, SERUM NEOPTERIN
  • Van Yüzüncü Yıl University Affiliated: No


Hepatitis B is a life-threatening viral liver infection caused by the hepatitis B virus. Neopterin is regarded as an immunologic biomarker of several diseases related to activation of the cellular immune system. Hepatitis B infection is associated with increased production of cellular immune system markers. We aimed to investigate whether there is a relationship between hepatitis B surface antigen-positivity (HBsAg +) and neopterin to determine the role of neopterin in the early diagnosis of hepatitis B infections. Seventy-two HBsAg (+) patients with normal liver function tests and forty-three controls were included in the study. Neopterin levels were 17.6 +/- 0.13 nmol/L in HBsAg (+) patients; and 9.12 +/- 0.09 nmol/L in infection-free controls, respectively. Compared to the control group, a statistically significant increase (p < 0.001) in the serum neopterin levels of the patients was observed. No significant relationship was determined between neopterin levels and age/sex (both, p > 0.05). With overstimulation of interferon-gamma, the production of neopterin increases by monocytes/macrophages. Likewise with other diseases associated with an activated cellular immune system, this study shows that neopterin can be a predictive biomarker for persistent carriers of hepatitis B infection.