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Iran J Kidney Dis. 2013 May;7(3):187-90.

Seroepidemiology of human T-cell lymphotropic virus 1 infection in hemodialysis patients: should we be concerned about it?

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Department of Immunology, Mazandaran University of Medical Sciences, Sari, Iran.


Human T-cell lymphotropic virus 1 (HTLV1) is a lymphotropic virus which can be transmitted through unprotected sexual activity, breast feeding, and blood transfusion. Although most of HTLV1-infected individuals remain asymptomatic carriers, 1% to 5% and 3% to 5% develop adult T-cell leukemia and HTLV1-associated myelopathy/tropical spastic paraparesis, respectively. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of HTLV1 infection in hemodialysis patients in Sari and Ghaemshahr. This cross-sectional study was conducted on160 patients using random samples selection, and included 80 men and 80 women (mean age, 59.1 ± 14.7 years). All the samples were screened for HTLV1 antibody by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and positive samples were confirmed by Western blot assay. Only 1 patient had a positive anti-HTLV1 enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test, which was confirmed by Western blot. The overall prevalence of HTLV1 seropositivity was 0.6%. The patient was a 21-year-old woman with a history of multiple blood transfusions. She had a history of unsuccessful kidney transplantation and had been on hemodialysis before transplant, too. This study suggests that HTLV1 infection may not be prevalent in high-risk patients in Mazandaran province, and there is no need for HTLV1 screening of blood samples.

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