De Novo Hepatitis B Virus Infection

  • Ken OkaiEmail author
  • Kazumichi Abe
  • Atsushi Takahashi
  • Hiromasa Ohira


Hepatitis B virus (HBV) reactivation is defined as HBV reproliferation under specific conditions, such as immunosuppression. A state of reactivation counteracts a state of immunosuppression. Thus, hepatitis that occurs due to an attack on HBV-infected hepatocytes by a recovered immune system is known as de novo hepatitis B infection. HBV reactivation is induced by various agents that are used for chemotherapy and immunosuppressive therapy, and the risk of reactivation determines the severity of both HBV infection and immunosuppression. Several reports have described HBV reactivation due to antirheumatic agents used to treat rheumatic and connective tissue disorders. However, HBV reactivation does not occur frequently, and immunosuppressive treatment is usually long term; thus, the risk of hepatitis onset due to an immune response is low. However, de novo hepatitis B infection tends to be severe, and if the patient becomes ill, the mortality risk is not only high, but treatment of the underlying disease is also complicated by hepatitis onset. Therefore, preventing onset itself is of primary importance. Currently, according to the “Guidelines for the Management of Hepatitis B Virus Reactivation Caused by Immunosuppression/Chemotherapy”, it is imperative to perform monitoring and administer preventive treatment with nucleic acid analogues to all patients with rheumatic and connective tissue disorders who are likely to develop hepatitis B reactivation. In addition, future research should consider clarifying viral and host factors related to HBV reactivation and severity to define high-risk patients.


HBV reactivation Immunosuppressive therapy Rheumatoid arthritis Nucleic acid analogue Hepatitis B Treatment Guidelines 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ken Okai
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kazumichi Abe
    • 1
  • Atsushi Takahashi
    • 1
  • Hiromasa Ohira
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GastroenterologyFukushima Medical University School of MedicineFukushimaJapan

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