Hepatitis Delta and Hepatitis E
We estimated the prevalence of HEV infection in general population and assess whether HEV is a common trigger of ACLF in cirrhotic patients in The Gambia, West Africa. We first conducted an HEV sero-survey in healthy volunteers. We then tested cirrhotic patients with ACLF (cases) and compensated cirrhosis (controls) for anti-HEV IgG as a marker of exposure to HEV, and anti-HEV IgA and HEV RNA as a marker of recent infection. We also described the characteristics and survival of the ACLF cases and controls.
Hepatitis E virus infection is endemic in The Gambia, where both faecal-oral route (contaminated water) and zoonotic transmission (pigs/pork meat) may be important. However, acute HEV was not a common cause of acute-on-chronic liver failure in The Gambia. This work has been published in Aliment Pharmacol Ther., 2016.
Our community screen and treat intervention found a prevalence of Hepatitis Delta virus (HDV) of 2% in West Africa. Additional virological analysis are currently under progress to assess the characteritics of patients infected with HDV in our cohort and its impact of liver disease morbidity and mortality.