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J Gen Virol. 2005 Jul;86(Pt 7):2047-2056. doi: 10.1099/vir.0.80922-0.

A new subtype (subgenotype) Ac (A3) of hepatitis B virus and recombination between genotypes A and E in Cameroon.

Author information

1
Department of Clinical Molecular Informative Medicine, Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kawasumi, Mizuho, Nagoya 467-8601, Japan.
2
Department of Internal Medicine and Molecular Science, Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Kawasumi, Mizuho, Nagoya 467-8601, Japan.
3
Department of Hematology, Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, University of Yaounde, Yaounde BP1937, Cameroon.
4
Laboratory of Primate Mode, Institute for Virus Research, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8507, Japan.
5
Laboratory of Viral Pathogenesis, Institute for Virus Research, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606-8507, Japan.
6
Department of Viral Infection and International Health, Graduate School of Medical Science, Kanazawa University, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-8640, Japan.

Abstract

Blood samples (n=544) from two different populations (Pygmies and Bantus) in Cameroon, West Africa, were analysed. Serological tests indicated that the anti-hepatitis C virus (HCV) prevalence in Bantus (20.3 %) was higher than that in Pygmies (2.3 %, P<0.0001), whereas the distribution of hepatitis B virus (HBV) serological markers was equally high in both populations: in total, 9.4, 17.3 and 86.8 % for HBsAg, anti-HBs and anti-HBc, respectively. HBV genotype A (HBV/A) and HBV/E were predominant (43.5 % each) in both populations, and HBV/D was found in a minority (13 %). The preS/S region was sequenced in nine cases (five HBV/A and four HBV/E) and the complete genome in six cases (four HBV/A and two HBV/E). Subsequent phylogenetic analysis revealed that the HBV/A strains were distinct from the subtypes (subgenotypes) described previously, Ae (A2) and Aa (A1), and in the preS/S region they clustered with previously reported sequences from Cameroon. Based on the nucleotide difference from Aa (A1) and Ae (A2), more than 4 % in the complete genome, the Cameroonian strains were suggested to represent a new subtype (subgenotype), designated HBV/Ac (A3). A high (3.9 %) nucleotide divergence in HBV/Ac (A3) strains suggested that the subtype (subgenotype) has a long natural history in the population of Cameroon. One of the HBV/Ac (A3) strains was found to be a recombinant with an HBV/E-specific sequence in the polymerase reverse transcriptase domain. Further cohort studies will be required to assess detailed epidemiological, virological and clinical characteristics of HBV/Ac (A3), as well as its recombinant form.

PMID:
15958684
DOI:
10.1099/vir.0.80922-0
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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