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Gastroenterology. 2003 Aug;125(2):444-51.

Hepatitis B virus genotypes in the United States: results of a nationwide study.

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Division of Gastroenterology, University of Michigan Medical Center, 3912 Taubman Center, Box 0362, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-0362, USA.



Hepatitis B virus (HBV) genotypes may be related to severity of liver disease and treatment response. The aims of this nationwide study were to determine the prevalence of HBV genotypes in the United States and the association between HBV genotypes and patient demographics, mode of infection, and clinical status.


A total of 694 consecutive chronic HBV-infected patients seen in 17 U.S. liver centers during a 1-year period were enrolled. Demographic, clinical, and laboratory data were collected. Sera were tested for HBV genotyping, precore, and core promoter variants by line-probe assays.


All 7 HBV genotypes (A-G) were found, with genotypes A and C the most common. The prevalence of HBV genotypes was different in different regions of the United States. A strong correlation was found between HBV genotypes and ethnicity. HBV genotype A was prevalent among white and black patients, whereas genotypes B and C were most common among Asian patients. The predominant genotype among patients born in the United States, Europe, the Far East, and Southeast Asia were A, D, C, and B, respectively. Genotypes A and C were associated with a higher prevalence of hepatitis B e antigen. Precore variant was detected in 27% of patients and core promoter variant in 44% of patients.


Our study suggests that the epidemiology of HBV infection in the United States may have changed over time as a result of immigration from countries with a high prevalence of HBV infection. HBV genotypes may account for the heterogeneity in disease manifestations among patients with chronic HBV infection.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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