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Prevalence of hepatitis C in South Africa: detection of anti-HCV in recent and stored serum.

Ellis, LA; Brown, D; Conradie, JD; Paterson, A; Sher, R; Millo, J; Theodossiadou, E; (1990) Prevalence of hepatitis C in South Africa: detection of anti-HCV in recent and stored serum. J Med Virol , 32 (4) pp. 249-251.

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Abstract

The prevalence of anti-HCV was studied in a cohort of 2,072 South Africans. The results were compared in selected recently collected sera and in stored sera. The serum ALT and anti-HBc were also studied as surrogate markers in this population. The following groups were tested: (a) 498 urban, black blood donors (b) 500 white blood donors (c) 500 Asian blood donors (d) 216 rural hospitalized patients (e) 358 rural mineworkers. Sera found positive by the original ELISA were retested, and reproducibly positive tests in rural black men (group d) were confirmed both by recombinant immunoblot assay and by a second ELISA. An anti-HCV prevalence of 1.2%, 0.8%, and 0.6% in urban blacks, Asians, and whites was found. Antibodies to hepatitis B core antigen were found in 42.9%, 3.4%, and 1.2% of black, Asian, and white donors, respectively; 76% of donors positive for anti-HCV were anti-HBc negative. In rural African men, 17% of stored serum samples and 9.2% of recently collected serum samples were positive for anti-HCV. In this cohort 3.84% were positive by all three assays. These results suggest that the prevalence of anti-HCV in low and high-risk South African urban blood donors is comparable to high and low prevalence areas in Europe, the United States, and Japan, but indicates a relatively high degree of exposure to hepatitis C in rural African men. The reactivity of stored, frozen sera in this population requires further investigation. In South African urban blood donors, surrogate marker testing will not expedite HCV screening.

Type: Article
Title: Prevalence of hepatitis C in South Africa: detection of anti-HCV in recent and stored serum.
Location: United States
Keywords: Adult, Alanine Transaminase, Blood Donors, Cohort Studies, Ethnic Groups, European Continental Ancestry Group, Hepatitis Antibodies, Hepatitis B Core Antigens, Hepatitis C, Humans, Male, South Africa, Urban Population
UCL classification: UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Medical Sciences
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/47908
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