Ataxia-telangiectasia: Immunocytochemical demonstration ofα-fetoprotein and hepatitis B surface antigen in the liver

Research paper by E. Ohama, F. Ikuta

Indexed on: 01 Mar '82Published on: 01 Mar '82Published in: Acta Neuropathologica


Paraffin sections of liver, thymus, and associated tumor tissue from five autopsied patients with ataxia-telangiectasia (AT) were examined for the presence of α-fetoprotein (AFP) and hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) by the immunoperoxidase method. In all the autopsied patients, the presence of both AFP and HBsAg was detected in the hepatocytes, but not in the cells of the thymus or tumor tissue. These results support the view that the liver is not fully developed in patients with AT and suggest that persistent infection with hepatitis B virus (HBV) may play an important role in the etiology and pathogenesis of AT.