Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Transmission of Hepatitis C among family members

24.08.2005


A study examines the incidence and risk factors associated with Hepatitis C infection in rural Egypt



The prevalence of antibodies to Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) in Egypt is among the highest in the world. From the 1950s until 1982 hundreds of thousands were infected during mass campaigns to control schistosomiasis (a parasitic disease) using mass therapy with intravenous antimony compounds, but little is known about current risk factors and rates of transmission. Studies of high risk populations, such as intravenous drug users, shed little light on HCV transmission in Egypt where this high risk behavior is rare.

In a study led by G. Thomas Strickland, M.D. of the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore, MD and published in the September 2005 issue of Hepatology, Egyptian and American researchers surveyed rates of HCV infection in two rural communities having a prevalence of antibody to HCV of 24 and 9 percent.


Hepatology, the official journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), is published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., and is available online via Wiley InterScience at http://www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/hepatology.

A total of 10,112 HCV negative individuals were identified during an annual survey in 1997, with follow-up performed on an average of 1.6 years later in 6,738 subjects. Of these, 33 developed HCV antibodies, an incidence of 3.1/1000 person-years (PY), and 6.8/1000 PY in the 28 subjects in the village having the 24 percent prevalence of HCV. None of the 33 individuals was diagnosed with viral hepatitis or reported symptoms of acute hepatitis. An analysis of risk factors showed the strongest predictor of infection with HCV was having and anti-HCV positive family member. Among those that did, incidence was 5.8/1000 PY, compared to 1.0/1000 PY; 27/33 incident cases had an anti-HCV positive family member. Parenteral exposures increased the risk of HCV, but were not statistically significant; 67 percent of seroconverters were less than 20 years old, and the highest incidence rate (14.1/1000 PY) was in children under 10 living in households with an anti-HCV positive parent in the village with the high prevalence of HCV antibodies. The infection rate was also increased (13.1/1000 PY) in men married to an HCV positive woman.

"We believe HCV exposures in rural Egyptian communities are usually less intense than those in individuals infected by contaminated blood, either from transfusion of blood or a blood product, or from abuse of intravenous drugs," the authors state. Although not statistically proven to be a risk in this study, they cite frequent injections, usually given at home for health purposes with syringes and needles sometimes used for more than one person, as the most common parenteral exposure route. The strong relationship between the risk of infection in children and the presence of HCV antibodies in their parents suggests that transmission of HCV is occurring between family members, possibly by exposure to infectious blood or saliva, or by sharing needles. In the past, mass treatment campaigns for schistosomiasis involving multiple injections may have caused numerous HCV infections in families, but this would not account for current infection rates, other than placing younger members of families living with those who contracted HCV in this way at higher risk.

The authors conclude: "It is exceedingly important to learn the mechanisms by which HCV transmission is occurring between family members so that preventive measures can be initiated, particularly in children having HCV-infected parents."

David Greenberg | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/hepatology
http://www.wiley.com

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht The personality factor: How to foster the sharing of research data
06.09.2017 | ZBW – Leibniz-Informationszentrum Wirtschaft

nachricht Europe’s Demographic Future. Where the Regions Are Heading after a Decade of Crises
10.08.2017 | Berlin-Institut für Bevölkerung und Entwicklung

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The pyrenoid is a carbon-fixing liquid droplet

Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.

A warming planet

Im Focus: Highly precise wiring in the Cerebral Cortex

Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.

The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...

Im Focus: Tiny lasers from a gallery of whispers

New technique promises tunable laser devices

Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...

Im Focus: Ultrafast snapshots of relaxing electrons in solids

Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!

When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...

Im Focus: Quantum Sensors Decipher Magnetic Ordering in a New Semiconducting Material

For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.

Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

“Lasers in Composites Symposium” in Aachen – from Science to Application

19.09.2017 | Event News

I-ESA 2018 – Call for Papers

12.09.2017 | Event News

EMBO at Basel Life, a new conference on current and emerging life science research

06.09.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Rainbow colors reveal cell history: Uncovering β-cell heterogeneity

22.09.2017 | Life Sciences

Penn first in world to treat patient with new radiation technology

22.09.2017 | Medical Engineering

Calculating quietness

22.09.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>