Hepatitis E as a Zoonosis.Adv Exp Med Biol. 2016; 948:61-71.AE
Hepatitis E (HE) virus infection is not limited to spread from human to human but also occurs between animals and more importantly as zoonotic spread from animals to humans. Genotyping of strains from hepatitis E virus-infected patients has revealed that these infections are not all caused by genotypes 1 or 2 but often by genotypes 3 or 4. Therefore, it is important to understand the striking difference between the spread of genotypes 1 and 2 in countries with poor sanitary standards and the spread of genotypes 3 and 4 in countries with good sanitary standards. The number of animal species known to be infected with HEV is expanding rapidly. The finding of HEV in new host species always raises the question regarding the zoonotic potential of these newfound strains. However, as new strains are found, the complexity increases.Certain genotypes are known to have the ability of zoonotic spread from certain animal species and these animals may even constitute an infection reservoir. Some animal species may contribute to zoonotic infections albeit on a smaller scale, while others are believed to be of minor or no importance at all. This chapter reviews possible sources of zoonotic hepatitis E virus infection.