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Retrovirology. 2005 May 31;2:38.

Prevalence of GB virus type C in urban Americans infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1.

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Saint Michael's Medical Center, Newark, New Jersey 07102, USA.


GBV-C virus infection has been linked to improved clinical outcome in HIV-1 co-infected individuals. The epidemiology of GBV-C has, thus far, been limited to the gay male, HIV+ population. Here we describe the prevalence of antibodies against GBV-C envelope glycoprotein E2 and GBV-C viremia in an HIV+ inner city population. This study group is predominantly African-American; 41% of the participants are women. The major risk factor for HIV infection is intravenous drug use. Overall, 56% of the study population had evidence of current or past infection with GBV-C. GBV-C exposure was not associated with hepatitis C virus infection. The group of participants, who had GBV-C viremia and anti-E2 antibodies, had high percentage of patients with an undetectable HIV-1 viral load. These data provide increased insight into the prevalence of GBV-C co-infection in the HIV epidemic in this understudied population.

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