History of Hepatitis C in Volunteer Blood Donors

National Institutes of Health (NIH) logo

National Institutes of Health (NIH)




Hepatitis C

Study type


Funder types




Details and patient eligibility


Hepatitis C is a disease of the liver caused by the Hepatitis C Virus (HCV). Patients with hepatitis C may feel well and show no signs or symptoms of being ill. However, researchers would like to study the long-term effects of this disease.

Volunteer blood donors diagnosed with chronic hepatitis C viral (HCV) and various levels of liver enzyme activity will be offered a complete medical evaluation and liver biopsy. The tests will enable researchers to provide the patients with an idea of how severe their liver disease is. The virus and patient will be studied in order to understand why patients with hepatitis C develop different levels of liver damage.

Full description

A selected sample of volunteer blood donors with chronic hepatitis C viral (HCV) infection and various levels of serum aminotransferase activity will be offered a complete medical evaluation and liver biopsy to determine the severity of their liver disease. Various virological and host factors will be studied in an attempt to determine why patients with HCV infection develop differing degrees of liver disease.




No Healthy Volunteers

Inclusion and exclusion criteria

Patients with chronic hepatitis C.

Age 18 to 70 years, male or female.

HCV infection indicated by the presence of anti-HCV (by ELISA and recombinant immunoblot assay [RIBA]).

Written informed consent.

Women must not be pregnant.

Patients must not have significant systemic illnesses other than liver disease, including congestive heart failure, renal failure, uncontrolled diabetes mellitus.

Patients must not have antiviral or immunosuppressive therapy within the last 6 months.

Patients must not have HIV infection.

Patients must not have contraindications to liver biopsy (mainly clotting abnormality (coumadin therapy, platelet count less than 50,000/cubic millimeter, prothrombin time more than 4 seconds beyond control)).

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