GB virus C genotype 2 predominance in a hepatitis C virus/HIV infected population associated with reduced liver disease.J Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2009 Aug; 24(8):1407-10.JG
BACKGROUND AND AIM
GB virus C (GBV-C) infection in hepatitis C virus (HCV)/HIV co-infection is associated with a significant reduction in the severity of HCV-related liver disease. The role of GBV-C genotype in this association is unknown. It has been suggested that GBV-C genotype may influence CD4 positive T-cell counts in HCV/HIV co-infected patients. The aim of the present study was to identify the GBV-C genotype in a HCV/HIV co-infected population and determine if the GBV-C genotype contributes to a reduction in HCV-related liver disease.
GBV-C RNA from 57 patients who were co-infected with HCV/HIV was analyzed. GBV-C RNA was detected by reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction with primers to the NS5B gene and genotype determined by phylogenetic analysis after sequencing using E2 gene primers.
Genotype 2 was the predominant isolate in our population and was detected in 50/56 (89.3%) of patients, although sequences with similarity to genotypes 1, 3, 4 and 5 were also identified. There was no statistical difference between CD4 positive T-cell counts in the GBV-C genotype 2 and non-genotype 2 groups.
The GBV-C genotype distribution in our HCV/HIV patient group was consistent with that reported in other developed countries. The predominance of genotype 2 in this study meant that we could not draw a conclusion for the role of GBV-C genotype in the reduced severity of liver disease in co-infected patients but CD4 positive T-cell counts appeared to be unaffected by GBV-C genotype.