Hepatitis C virus versus innate and adaptive immune responses: a tale of coevolution and coexistence

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Since the identification of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) 20 years ago, much progress has been made in our understanding of its life cycle and interaction with the host immune system. Much has been learned from HCV itself, which, via decades of coevolution, gained an intricate knowledge of host innate and adaptive immune responses and developed sophisticated ways to preempt, subvert, and antagonize them. This review discusses the clinical, virological, and immunological features of acute and chronic hepatitis C and the role of the immune response in spontaneous and treatment-induced HCV clearance.

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