New perspectives for research on hepatitis C virus

The hepatitis C virus (HCV) infects around 160 million people. Although there are new therapies, HCV infection is one of the most common causes of liver transplantation as these new drugs are very expensive and not used extensively. Also vaccination against HCV is currently impossible. Scientists at the TWINCORE are now investigating a very close relative of the hepatitis C virus: the „non-primate hepacivirus“, (NPHV). This newly discovered viral pathogen infects horses and donkeys and raises questions that will give new insights about the human hepatitis C virus. In a recent study, published in PNAS, the researchers have focused on immune control of NPHV in its natural host, the horse. (Mehr in: Pressemitteilungen – idw – Informationsdienst Wissenschaft)