Autoimmune diseases of the liver, autoimmune hepatitis and primary biliary cirrhosis: Unfinished business

Ian R Mackay

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Autoimmune liver diseases (AILD) including autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) and primary biliary cirrhosis (PBC) have attracted much attention since their discovery 50 years ago, but there remain items of unfinished business. These relate to disease susceptibility including genetic influences (HLA and non-HLA genes, genes associated with female predisposition, and others) and environmental influences (infections, chemicals, xenobiotics and medications). Also needed is better characterization of autoantigenic molecules, particularly the anti-F-actin specificity characteristic of AIH, shown here to have functional effects in vitro. Deeper analysis of T-lymphocyte function in AILD should reveal relative contributions of eachof the multiple subsets of T cells now being defined in studies on laboratory animals, CD4(+), CD8(+), Th1, Th2, Th17, memory subsets and regulatory subsets. Diagnostic immunology providers now offer high-performance assay formats that call for systematic clinical assessments to achieve standardization, calibration and optimal information.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S357 - S364
Number of pages8
JournalHepatology Research
Issue numberSuppl 3
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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