Seroprevalence of hepatitis B and C virus in HIV-1 and HIV-2 infected Gambians.
Jobarteh M., Malfroy M., Peterson I., Jeng A., Sarge-Njie R., Alabi A., Peterson K., Cotten M., Hall A., Rowland-Jones S., Whittle H., Tedder R., Jaye A., Mendy M.
BACKGROUND: The prevalence of HIV/hepatitis co-infection in sub-Saharan Africa is not well documented, while both HIV and HBV are endemic in this area. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study is to determine the seroprevalence of HBV and HCV virus in HIV-infected subjects in the Gambia. METHODS: Plasma samples from HIV infected patients (190 individuals with clinically defined AIDS and 382 individuals without AIDS) were tested retrospectively for the presence of HBV sero-markers and for serum HBV DNA, screened for HCV infection by testing for anti-HCV antibody and HCV RNA. RESULTS: HBsAg prevalence in HIV-positive individuals is 12.2%. HIV/HBV co-infected individuals with CD4 count of <200 cells µL⁻¹ have a higher HBV DNA viral load than patients with higher CD4 count (log 4.0 vs. log 2.0 DNA copies/ml, p < 0.05). Males (OR = 1.8, 95% CI: 1.0, 3.2) were more likely to be HBsAg positive than female. HCV seroprevalence was 0.9% in HIV-positive individuals. CONCLUSION: The prevalence of HBsAg carriage in HIV- infected Gambians is similar to that obtained in the general population. However co-infected individuals with reduced CD4 levels, indicative of AIDS had higher prevalence of HBeAg retention and elevated HBV DNA levels compared to non-AIDS patients with higher CD4 count.