In Italy, about 7 % of the resident population is represented by immigrants originating from geographic regions at high endemicity for hepatitis B virus infection. This study aims to assess the prevalence of occult HBV infection (OBI) including the identification of HBV-genotypes in a population of immigrants serologically negative for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg). Between May 2006 and May 2010, 339 immigrants were tested for markers of HBV, hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections. HBV-DNA was tested by using nested-PCR assays on three different genetic region. HBV-DNA was detected in plasma samples of 11/339 (3.2 %) patients. Most of them had no serological markers of HBV infection, 3/58 (5.2 %) were anti-HBc-alone, and 4/13 (30.8 %) were anti-HIV positive. HIV positivity was the only factor independently associated with the higher probability of observing OBI (OR = 16.5, p < 0.001). No HCV co-infected patients were found. Genotype D was detected in 9/11 (81.8 %) OBI cases, while the remaining two (18.2 %) were classified as genotype E. Although OBI was found at lower rate than expected among immigrants from highly endemic countries, anti-HBc alone positivity was confirmed as a sentinel marker of occult HBV infection. Nevertheless, a marked heterogeneity of HBV markers was found among HBV-DNA positive subjects. Our finding evidenced the predominance of HBV-genotype D viral strains among OBI cases, also in those from geographical areas where overt HBV infections are mainly sustained by viral genotypes other than D.

Tramuto, F., Maida, C.M., Colomba, G.M., Di Carlo, P., Mazzola, G., Li Vecchi, V., et al. (2013). Occult Hepatitis B Infection in the Immigrant Population of Sicily, Italy. JOURNAL OF IMMIGRANT AND MINORITY HEALTH(15), 725-731 [0.1007/s10903-012-9699-y].

Occult Hepatitis B Infection in the Immigrant Population of Sicily, Italy.

TRAMUTO, Fabio;MAIDA, Carmelo Massimo;DI CARLO, Paola;LI VECCHI, Valentina;MONTALTO, Giuseppe;VITALE, Francesco
2013-01-01

Abstract

In Italy, about 7 % of the resident population is represented by immigrants originating from geographic regions at high endemicity for hepatitis B virus infection. This study aims to assess the prevalence of occult HBV infection (OBI) including the identification of HBV-genotypes in a population of immigrants serologically negative for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg). Between May 2006 and May 2010, 339 immigrants were tested for markers of HBV, hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections. HBV-DNA was tested by using nested-PCR assays on three different genetic region. HBV-DNA was detected in plasma samples of 11/339 (3.2 %) patients. Most of them had no serological markers of HBV infection, 3/58 (5.2 %) were anti-HBc-alone, and 4/13 (30.8 %) were anti-HIV positive. HIV positivity was the only factor independently associated with the higher probability of observing OBI (OR = 16.5, p < 0.001). No HCV co-infected patients were found. Genotype D was detected in 9/11 (81.8 %) OBI cases, while the remaining two (18.2 %) were classified as genotype E. Although OBI was found at lower rate than expected among immigrants from highly endemic countries, anti-HBc alone positivity was confirmed as a sentinel marker of occult HBV infection. Nevertheless, a marked heterogeneity of HBV markers was found among HBV-DNA positive subjects. Our finding evidenced the predominance of HBV-genotype D viral strains among OBI cases, also in those from geographical areas where overt HBV infections are mainly sustained by viral genotypes other than D.
Settore MED/42 - Igiene Generale E Applicata
Settore MED/09 - Medicina Interna
Settore MED/17 - Malattie Infettive
Tramuto, F., Maida, C.M., Colomba, G.M., Di Carlo, P., Mazzola, G., Li Vecchi, V., et al. (2013). Occult Hepatitis B Infection in the Immigrant Population of Sicily, Italy. JOURNAL OF IMMIGRANT AND MINORITY HEALTH(15), 725-731 [0.1007/s10903-012-9699-y].
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10447/65219
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