Emergence of an S gene mutant during thymosin α1 therapy in a patient with chronic hepatitis B

Jui-Hsiang Tang, Chau Ting Yeh, Tse Ching Chen, Sen Yung Hsieh, Chia Ming Chu, Yun Fan Liaw

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17 Citations (Scopus)


The presence of a hepatitis B virus S gene mutant was investigated in a patient being treated with thymosin α1. He was seropositive for hepatitis B e antigen throughout therapy but was intermittently seronegative for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) by an RIA. Sequence analysis revealed an S gene mutant in HBsAg-seronegative serum with two consecutive amino acid substitutions: threonine115-to-isoleucine and threonine116-to- asparagine, whereas no amino acid substitution or deletion was found in the pre-S region. A site-directed mutagenesis experiment confirmed that these mutations were responsible for the failure to detect HBsAg. In summary, an S gene mutant was identified in an HBsAg-seronegative patient. The mutations were located outside the putative 'a' determinant. The emergence of an S gene mutant during thymosin α1 treatment suggests that enhanced host immunity against HBsAg may play a role in its antiviral activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)866-869
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Infectious Diseases


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