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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz
Fundação Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz
ISSN: 1678-8060
EISSN: 1678-8060
Vol. 102, No. 1, 2007, pp. 107-110
Bioline Code: oc07018
Full paper language: English
Document type: Research Article
Document available free of charge

Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz, Vol. 102, No. 1, 2007, pp. 107-110

 en Low prevalence of hepatitis C virus infection in Amerindians from Western Venezuela
Monsalve-Castillo, Francisca; Chacïn-Bonilla, Leonor; Atencio, Ricardo J; Espinoza, Leticia Porto; Costa-León, Luciana & Echevarrïa, José M

Abstract

Previous studies have not found hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in Amerindians from Western Venezuela. A survey of 254 Bari and Yukpa natives aged 10-60 years (mean ± SD age = 35 ± 5.4 years) from four communities, two Bari and two Yukpa, in this area were studied to assess the prevalence of antibodies to HCV (anti-HCV) and HCV RNA among these indigenous populations. Serum samples were examined initially for anti-HCV by a four generation enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Reactive samples were then tested using a third generation recombinant immunoblot assay (RIBA-3). Viral RNA was investigated in all immunoblot-reactive samples by a nested polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method. Six (2.3%) of 254 natives were positive by ELISA, one (2.2%) of these reactive samples were positive by RIBA, and four (1.5%) were indeterminate. Only two (0.8%) were positive by PCR, corresponding to 1 (2.1%) of 47 inhabitants of a Yukpa community and to 1 (2.2%) of 45 subjects of a Bari community. Iatrogenic is thought to play a role in acquisition of the infection. The findings indicate a HCV focus of low endemicity and are compatible with a low degree of exposures of the natives to the virus. Studies are necessary to assess the risk factors for infection in these Amerindians.

Keywords
hepatitis C virus ­ prevalence ­ Amerindians - Venezuela

 
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