Serum hepatitis B e antigen (HBeAg) and HBV DNA are indicators of active replication of HBV, whereas IgM antibody to hepatitis B core antigen (IgM anti-HBc) may indicate an active immune response to chronic HBV infection. Fifty-eight carriers of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) who had frequent parenteral exposures were studied for the presence of HBeAg, HBV DNA, IgM anti-HBc and hepatitis delta virus (HDV) serologic markers. Active replication of HBV was detected in 36.2% (25% of drug addicts, 16.7% of thalassemia patients, and 46.9% of hemodialysis patients) and seropositivity for IgM anti-HBc in 55.2% of the HBsAg carriers. Among the 39 HBsAg carriers who were negative for HBeAg, IgM anti-HBc was detected significantly more frequently than HBV DNA (46.1% vs. 5.1%, p < 0.001). Serologic evidence of HDV infection was detected in 35% of drug addicts, 50% of thalassemia patients and in 9.4% of hemodialysis patients. These data revealed that (a) continued replication of HBV was more frequent in hemodialysis patients than in drug addicts and thalassemia patients who are HBsAg carriers and (b) the opposite was true for the prevalence of HDV infection.
|Number of pages||4|
|State||Published - 1986|