Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Occult hepatitis B in dialysis patients

08.11.2004


Prevalence is higher than standard tests for hepatitis B would suggest

Some kidney dialysis patients contract hepatitis B virus (HBV) during the course of their treatment, possibly from other members of the dialysis population with occult HBV. People with occult HBV test negative for HBV surface antigen (HBsAg) but positive for HBV-DNA, which is detected through sensitive tests not typically performed on dialysis patients. A recent study found that the prevalence of occult HBV in adult hemodialysis patients is four to five times higher than standard HBsAg testing would suggest. These findings are published in the November 2004 issue of Hepatology. Hepatology, the official journal of the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases (AASLD), published by John Wiley & Sons, Inc., is available online via Wiley InterScience.

Previous studies that have looked for evidence of occult HBV in dialysis patients have found a wide range of infection rates – from 0 to 50 percent -- possibly due to the differences in the study populations. In this study, researchers, led by Dr. Gerald Y. Minuk of the University of Manitoba, sought to find the prevalence of occult HBV in a large North American population of adult dialysis patients and to determine if any demographic, biochemical and/or serologic feature could help identify those infected.



Between May and September of 2003, the researchers recruited hemodialysis patients in Winnipeg, Manitoba, an urban area in Canada with a population of about 680,000. They drew blood from and recorded demographic data for each of the 241 participants. They then performed liver biochemistry, HBV serology, and HBV-DNA testing by real-time polymerase chain reaction with two independent primer sets.

Only two of the participants tested positive for HBsAg, but an additional nine patients were found to have occult HBV, that is, they tested negative for HBsAg and positive for HBV-DNA. "The results of this study indicate that in this North American urban centre, the prevalence of occult HBV in adult hemodialysis patients is approximately 4 to 5 times higher than standard HBsAg testing would suggest," the authors report. The majority of the infections were associated with low viral loads and a surprisingly high prevalence of the sG145R-mutant.

Unfortunately, but not unexpectedly, there were no obvious demographic, biochemical or serologic indicators for those with occult HBV. For the nine patients with occult HBV, the mean age was 61.4 years and 56 percent were male. Seventy-eight percent were Caucasian, and two were Southeast Asian. All had normal liver enzyme and function tests.

Occult HBV infection can be transmitted to others, according to available data involving chimpanzees, infants and transfusion and organ recipients. "Until data exist indicating whether nosocomial transmission of occult HBV can occur in susceptible dialysis patients and/or staff, screening with sensitive PCR-based assays of all dialysis patients for HBV-DNA regardless of demographic, biochemical or serologic findings seems prudent," the authors conclude.

If occult HBV status is known, transmission among dialysis patients might be limited by avoiding dialyzer reuse and dedicating dialysis rooms, machines and staff for infected patients. Vaccinations may also protect dialysis patients from contracting HBV, however, vaccination acceptance and response rates are low in this population of dialysis patients.

Amy Molnar | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.interscience.wiley.com/journal/hepatology
http://www.wiley.com

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Immune Defense Without Collateral Damage
23.01.2017 | Universität Basel

nachricht The interactome of infected neural cells reveals new therapeutic targets for Zika
23.01.2017 | D'Or Institute for Research and Education

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

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

Im Focus: Quantum optical sensor for the first time tested in space – with a laser system from Berlin

For the first time ever, a cloud of ultra-cold atoms has been successfully created in space on board of a sounding rocket. The MAIUS mission demonstrates that quantum optical sensors can be operated even in harsh environments like space – a prerequi-site for finding answers to the most challenging questions of fundamental physics and an important innovation driver for everyday applications.

According to Albert Einstein's Equivalence Principle, all bodies are accelerated at the same rate by the Earth's gravity, regardless of their properties. This...

Im Focus: Traffic jam in empty space

New success for Konstanz physicists in studying the quantum vacuum

An important step towards a completely new experimental access to quantum physics has been made at University of Konstanz. The team of scientists headed by...

Im Focus: How gut bacteria can make us ill

HZI researchers decipher infection mechanisms of Yersinia and immune responses of the host

Yersiniae cause severe intestinal infections. Studies using Yersinia pseudotuberculosis as a model organism aim to elucidate the infection mechanisms of these...

Im Focus: Interfacial Superconductivity: Magnetic and superconducting order revealed simultaneously

Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.

While superconductivity and magnetism are generally believed to be mutually exclusive, surprisingly, in this new material, superconducting correlations...

Im Focus: Studying fundamental particles in materials

Laser-driving of semimetals allows creating novel quasiparticle states within condensed matter systems and switching between different states on ultrafast time scales

Studying properties of fundamental particles in condensed matter systems is a promising approach to quantum field theory. Quasiparticles offer the opportunity...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Sustainable Water use in Agriculture in Eastern Europe and Central Asia

19.01.2017 | Event News

12V, 48V, high-voltage – trends in E/E automotive architecture

10.01.2017 | Event News

2nd Conference on Non-Textual Information on 10 and 11 May 2017 in Hannover

09.01.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Tracking movement of immune cells identifies key first steps in inflammatory arthritis

23.01.2017 | Health and Medicine

Electrocatalysis can advance green transition

23.01.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New technology for mass-production of complex molded composite components

23.01.2017 | Process Engineering

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>