Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Clin Virol. 2004 Jan;29(1):59-68.

Prevalence of hepatitis B virus DNA in anti-HBc-positive/HBsAg-negative sera correlates with HCV but not HIV serostatus.

Author information

Department of Virology, Bernhard-Nocht-Institute of Tropical Medicine, Bernhard-Nocht-Strasse 74, D-20359 Hamburg, Germany.



Hepatitis B virus (HBV) DNA often remains detectable in serum despite clinical recovery and loss of HBsAg.


To study whether coinfection with HIV and HCV influence the chance of detecting HBV DNA in sera with markers of past hepatitis B.


The test panel included 160 anti-HBc-positive/HBsAg-negative sera collected in the diagnostic setting. The following parameters were determined in the sera: anti-HIV (32% positive), anti-HCV (34% positive), HCV RNA (18% positive), and anti-HBs (37% positive). A highly sensitive PCR (90%-detection limit 100 copies/ml) amplifying the terminal protein (TP) region of HBV was established and HBV DNA was detected in 12.5% of the samples. In 70% of these samples, the HBV DNA concentration was below 500 copies/ml as measured by real-time PCR in the S gene. Logistic regression analysis revealed that the chance of detecting HBV DNA was increased by a positive HCV serostatus (odds ratio 5.0, 95%-CI 1.6-15.7), whereas HIV coinfection (odds ratio 2.0, 95%-CI 0.7-5.8), anti-HBs (odds ratio 0.9, 95%-CI 0.3-2.6), and HCV RNA status (odds ratio 0.4, 95%-CI 0.1-1.7) had no statistically significant influence. In contrast, the chance of detecting HCV RNA in the subgroup of anti-HCV-positive sera was increased by HIV coinfection (odds ratio 4.5, 95%-CI 1.2-17.4). Sequencing of the TP PCR products revealed neither a specific phylogenetic origin of the circulating HBV DNA nor clustering of uncommon mutations in the TP region.


The prevalence of HBV DNA in serum of anti-HBc-positive/HBsAg-negative subjects correlates with HCV rather than HIV serostatus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science
    Loading ...
    Support Center