Prevalence of hepatitis E virus (HEV) antibodies in Serbian blood donors

  • Tamaš Petrović Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Diana Lupulović Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Nereida Jiménez de Oya Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
  • Svetlana Vojvodić Institute for Blood Transfusion, Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Ana-Belén Blázquez Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
  • Estela Escribano-Romero Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
  • Miguel A Martín-Acebes Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
  • Aleksandar Potkonjak Faculty of Agriculture, University Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Vesna Milošević Institute of Public Health of Vojvodina, Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Sava Lazić Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia
  • Juan-Carlos Saiz Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
Keywords: hepatitis E virus, blood donors, serology, ELISA, RT-PCR

Abstract

Introduction: Hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection is rarely reported in industrialized countries, but recent studies have revealed quite variable seroprevalence rates among European populations, including blood donors. In Serbia, very limited data about HEV seroprevalence are available. This study aimed to determine the prevalence of anti-HEV IgG antibodies and HEV RNA in the sera of volunteer blood donors in Serbia.

Methodology: Serum samples from 200 volunteer blood donors were tested for the presence of anti-HEV IgG by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) using ORF-2 HEV genotype 3 recombinant proteins as antigen, and for the presence of HEV RNA by nested reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).

Results: In total, 15% of the volunteer blood donors were seropositive. The prevalence increased with age; 21.5%, 14.2%, and 5.4% HEV seroprevalence rates were found in individuals older than 51 years, between 31 and 50 years, and in those younger than 30 years of age, respectively. However, no HEV RNA was detected in any of the individuals analyzed.

Conclusions: The prevalence of anti-HEV IgG among blood donors as representatives of the general population is quite high in Serbia compared to data from many European countries. One of the reasons for this could be the high prevalence of HEV among Serbian pigs and the traditional consumption of piglet meat in the country. The relatively high HEV seroprevalence found among Serbian blood donors indicates the need for further investigation.

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Author Biographies

Tamaš Petrović, Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia
Virology Department, Senior Reasearch Fellow, Corresponding author
Diana Lupulović, Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia
Virology Department
Nereida Jiménez de Oya, Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
Present address: Division of Immunology, Transplantation and Infectious Diseases. SRSI. Milan, Italy
Miguel A Martín-Acebes, Instituto Nacional de Investigación y Tecnología Agraria y Alimentaria (INIA), Madrid, Spain
Present address: Dpto.Virología y Microbiología, Centro de Biología Molecular “Severo Ochoa”(CSIC-UAM), Madrid, Spain
Sava Lazić, Scientific Veterinary Institute Novi Sad, Novi Sad, Serbia
Virology Department
Published
2014-10-15
How to Cite
1.
Petrović T, Lupulović D, Jiménez de OyaN, Vojvodić S, BlázquezA-B, Escribano-RomeroE, Martín-AcebesMA, Potkonjak A, Milošević V, Lazić S, SaizJ-C (2014) Prevalence of hepatitis E virus (HEV) antibodies in Serbian blood donors. J Infect Dev Ctries 8:1322-1327. doi: 10.3855/jidc.4369
Section
Original Articles

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