Molecular epidemiology of GB type C virus among individuals exposed to hepatitis C virus in Cameroon
AbstractGB Virus Type C (GBV-C), a blood-borne flavivirus currently infects about one sixth of the world’s population. Its transmission has been reported through parenteral, sexual and vertical routes. Unusually for RNA viruses, it exhibits a high degree of conservation of the polyprotein sequence. The geographical distribution of GBV-C suggests an African origin and a long-term co-evolution in the human population but without any known pathogenicity. The aim of this study was to describe the different sub-types of this virus in Southern Cameroon. We studied the genetic epidemiology of GBV-C among rural populations where many HIV-1 and HCV genotypes have been identified. Plasma samples of 345 subjects with evidence of HCV exposure were tested for GBV-C infection. To detect GBV-C RNA, reverse transcription followed by a nested PCR of 5’UTR were performed. Direct sequencing and phylogenetic studies using PHYLIP, PAUP* and SimPlot were carried out. In total, 31 GBV-C RNA-positive samples were detected giving a prevalence of 9.0% among HCV-exposed individuals. Phylogenetic analysis of the 5’UTR showed two distinct clusters: Genotype 1 and Genotype 2. Twenty-eight isolates (8.0%) clustered with Genotype 1 and 3 (1.0%) with Genotype 2. More than one genotype of GBV-C is prevalent in Cameroon of which GBV-C Genotype 1 is more common, confirming reports in the literature. Studying the near full-length genome sequences of GBV-C isolates from primates in this region may provide clues of viral recombination, evolution and origin.
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Copyright (c) 2013 Judith N. Torimiro, Qing Mao, Nathan D. Wolfe, Ubald Tamoufe, Ana Weil, Eitel Mpoudi Ngole, Donald S. Burke, Stuart C. Ray, Dale Netski
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