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MOSCOW, 28 Aug — RIA Novosti, Alfia Enikeeva. Every year from acute viral hepatitis carry almost half a million lives — more than HIV, malaria and tuberculosis. On world day against hepatitis RIA Novosti together with experts understands how dangerous this infection is, and is it true that it is now possible to be cured.
An ancient disease
The hepatitis b virus passed from monkeys to humans about a hundred thousand years ago. Coming from Africa sixty thousand years ago, CRO-magnons spread it around the world. Such conclusions were made by German and Brazilian researchers analyzing the genomes of simian and human viruses hepatitis B.
Their colleagues from the Institute for the study of human history the max Planck in Jena believe that the first human infection occurred much later, about seven thousand years ago. And British scientists insist on more later Dating from 4500 to 800 years ago. If this ancient virus DNA of hepatitis b was isolated from the mummy of the XVI century, and it is very similar to the genome of modern virus, which in itself is strange. For five hundred years had to change.
Judging by the numerous and conflicting data on the origin of viral hepatitis, to agree scientists will not come soon. One thing is clear — a few thousand years ago, hepatitis was as widespread as today.
How sick Russians
According to who estimates, there are about 350 million people suffer with one or another kind of viral hepatitis. Basically we are talking about hepatitis b (257 million) and From (71 million). With about 80 percent of infected persons do not realize that they are carriers of a dangerous virus. Most new infections are registered in Africa and South-East Asia.
«In Russia four to five percent of the adult population suffer from hepatitis b, two to five per cent with hepatitis C. This is certainly not the worst on the world, and in General, viral hepatitis remains a challenge. But with regard to acute hepatitis b, we are at the level of advanced countries. And it has achieved in the last 15-20 years, when the opportunity to get vaccinated against this disease,» says RIA Novosti, Galina Kozhevnikova, head of the Department of infectious diseases medical Institute of PFUR.
«Viral hepatitis is acute form, but the possible transition to chronicity of the disease. That is, in the treatment of jaundice takes place, the patient recovers, but the virus remains in the body. He lives in the liver cells. These patients need to constantly check because they have a high risk of developing primary liver cancer and cirrhosis. Hepatitis b now have antiviral therapy drugs acting on the virus itself. Until a complete cure is difficult to say, because to get to the viruses in the liver cells we can’t, but to prevent these severe outcomes are real,» explains Kozhevnikov.
However, according to the Russian science Foundation in the next few years on the market may appear the medication that can completely cure hepatitis B. Russian scientists first in world to develop a group of medicines that destroy the virus inside liver cells. Preclinical trials on animals will begin next year.
Probably, this medication will help and from the hepatitis Delta (D) virus-satellites, which are infected infected with hepatitis b Virus-a parasite encodes only one antigen (protein) and therefore can not build a complete viral particle is a virion. For this it uses the envelope proteins of the hepatitis b virus.
Globally, about 15 million people infected with hepatitis Delta. Chavdar Pavlov notes that in Russia the cases of coinfection (simultaneous infection with the viruses hepatitis b and Delta) and superinfection (infection with hepatitis D patients with chronic hepatitis b) are recorded mainly in the Caucasus, particularly in Dagestan.
The gentle assassin neutralized
«The real problem is hepatitis C. the Vaccine for him there, and the main route of transmission — the use of intravenous drugs. Very high incidence was from 2000 to 2010. Eighty percent of patients who were identified then, are young people aged 18-25 years who inject drugs (now the figure below). Most of them are currently sick With chronic hepatitis C,» says Kozhevnikov.
Hepatitis C is the most unpleasant of all viral hepatitis as an acute course of the disease is almost asymptomatic. And at the first sign of illness — fever, nausea, vomiting, muscle pain can be confused with the common flu. Often patients seek medical help when the disease is already running. The hepatitis C virus often leads to liver cirrhosis and liver cancer, which in most cases ends in death.
© Illustration RIA Novosti . © Janssen Pharmaceutica NV 2013Вирусные hepatitis b and C© Illustration RIA Novosti . © Janssen Pharmaceutica NV 2013Вирусные hepatitis b and hepatitis C
«There is no vaccine, it is difficult to develop. Hepatitis C virus escapes immunological protection inside the body it changes its properties. Those antibodies that produce immune system three years ago, no longer apply to the new, slightly modified virus. But hepatitis C is a very good history of development of pharmacology. Now we definitely can say that it is curable completely. Developed and implemented the drugs of the so-called direct antiviral action. They act upon certain structures of the virus, block them and don’t let him multiply» — sums up the expert.
Experts warn that it is better to reduce the risk of disease these dangerous infections to a minimum: time to get vaccinated to protect themselves and be cautious of piercings and tattoos.