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Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is an enveloped, positive-strand RNA virus of the family Flaviviridae that primarily infects hepatocytes, causing acute and chronic liver disease. HCV is also associated with a variety of extrahepatic symptoms including central nervous system (CNS) abnormalities, cognitive dysfunction, fatigue and depression. These symptoms do not correlate with the severity of liver disease and are independent of hepatic encephalopathy. HCV RNA has been associated with CNS tissue, and reports of viral sequence diversity between brain and liver tissue suggest independent viral evolution in the CNS and liver. This review will explore the data supporting HCV infection of the CNS and how this fits into our current understanding of HCV pathogenesis.

Original publication

DOI

10.1111/j.1365-2893.2012.01591.x

Type

Journal article

Journal

J Viral Hepat

Publication Date

05/2012

Volume

19

Pages

301 - 306

Keywords

Brain, Hepacivirus, Humans, RNA, Viral