Background. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and/or hepatitis B virus (HBV) coinfection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has a greater risk of mortality than either HCV or HBV infection alone and is frequently associated with hepatitis flares after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation.
Methods. We performed a retrospective cohort study of 287 HIV-positive persons coinfected with HBV and/or HCV (70 had HBV coinfection only, 207 had HCV coninfection only, and 10 had HBV and HCV coinfections) who had pre-ART plasma samples evaluated for biomarkers associated with death (within 4 years) and/or hepatitis flare (within 4 months) after ART initiation. A predictive biomarker risk score was calculated.
Results. Forty-eight deaths and 50 hepatitis flares occurred. Nonsurvivors were older, had more prior AIDS-defining events, and had higher pre-ART triglycerides and aspartate transaminase levels. Detectable hyaluronic acid and higher d-dimer, interleukin 6, interleukin 8, and soluble CD14 levels were associated with death in univariate models and with a composite biomarker risk score. The risk of hepatitis flares was higher with HBV coinfection only (24.3 ) and with HBV and HCV coinfection (50 ) than with HCV coinfection only (13.5 ). Higher levels of alanine transaminase and interleukin 10 were also associated with hepatitis flares.
Conclusions. Among HIV-positive patients coinfected with HBV and/or HCV who are initiating ART, biomarkers of inflammation and coagulation are associated with an increased risk of death, whereas HBV coinfection and higher pre-ART interleukin 10 levels are associated with hepatitis flares.