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N Engl J Med. 1997 Mar 13;336(11):741-6.

Acute non-A-E hepatitis in the United States and the role of hepatitis G virus infection. Sentinel Counties Viral Hepatitis Study Team.

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1
Division of Viral and Rickettsial Diseases, National Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA 30333, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Little is known about the relation of the newly discovered hepatitis G virus (HGV) to the cause and clinical course of acute and chronic viral hepatitis.

METHODS:

We selected patients from a surveillance study of acute viral hepatitis in four U.S. counties who had acute disease during 1985 to 1986 or 1991 to 1995. Serum samples were tested for HGV RNA by the polymerase chain reaction.

RESULTS:

HGV RNA was detected in 4 of 45 patients with a diagnosis of non-A-E hepatitis (9 percent), 23 of 116 patients with hepatitis C (20 percent), 25 of 100 patients with hepatitis A (25 percent), and 32 of 100 patients with hepatitis B (32 percent) (P<0.05 for the comparison of hepatitis B with hepatitis non-A-E or C). The clinical characteristics of the acute illness were similar for patients with HGV alone and those with hepatitis A, B, or C with or without HGV infection. During a follow-up period of one to nine years, chronic hepatitis did not develop in any of the patients with HGV alone, but 75 percent were persistently positive for HGV RNA, as were 87 percent of those with both hepatitis C and HGV infection. The rates of chronic hepatitis were similar in patients with hepatitis C alone (60 percent) and those with both hepatitis C and HGV infection (61 percent).

CONCLUSIONS:

The evidence from this surveillance study does not implicate HGV as an etiologic agent of non-A-E hepatitis. Persistent infection with HGV was common, but it did not lead to chronic disease and did not affect the clinical course in patients with hepatitis A, B, or C.

PMID:
9052651
DOI:
10.1056/NEJM199703133361101
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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