Iranian Journal of Medical Sciences

Document Type: Original Article(s)


1 Monoclonal Antibody Research Centre, Avicenna Research Institute, ACECR, Tehran, Iran

2 Psychosocial Injuries Research Centre, Ilam University of Medical sciences, Ilam, Iran

3 National Institute of Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, NIGEB, Tehran, Iran

4 Digestive Disease Research Centre, Shariati Hospital, Tehran University of Medical Science, Tehran, Iran


Background: The ability of tumour suppressor protein p53 (P53) to regulate cell cycle processes can be modulated by hepatitis B virus (HBV). While preliminary evidences indicates the involvement of protein-x of HBV (HBx) in altering p53 DNA binding, no further data have been accumulated for the significance of serum p53 in chronic hepatitis B virus infected patients. Methods: 72 non-cirrhotic and 19 cirrhotic patients infected by HBV were enrolled for the analysis in this study. Enzyme linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was performed to study the concentrations of serum p53 protein. The tertiary structures of HBx and P53 were docked by Z-dock and Hex servers for in-silico protein-protein interaction analysis. Results: There was a significant association between the serum p53 and cirrhosis (OR=1.81 95% CI: 1.017-3.2, P=0.044). Cirrhotic patients had higher level of serum p53 compare with chronic infection of HBV (1.98±1.22 vs. 1.29±0.72 U/ml, P=0.05). No evidence of correlation was seen between the different variables such as age, gender, log viral load, serum alkaline phosphatase (ALP) and alanine aminotransferase (ALT) with serum p53. Tertiary model shows that the amino acid residues from Arg110 to Lys132 of the N-terminal of P53 which is critical for ubiquitination, are bonded to a region in N- terminal of HBx amino acid residues from Arg19 to Ser33. Conclusion: There is an increase in serum p53 in HBV-related cirrhosis patients. In this case, HBx might be responsible for such higher concentration of p53 through HBx-p53 protein-protein interaction, as is shown by molecular modeling approach.