Occult HBV infection among Egyptian hepatocellular carcinoma patients.

Hassan, Z. K., M. M. Hafez, T. M. Mansor, and A. R. N. Zekri, "Occult HBV infection among Egyptian hepatocellular carcinoma patients.", Virology journal, vol. 8, pp. 90, 2011.


BACKGROUND: Occult HBV infection accelerates the progression of liver fibrosis, cirrhosis, and finally leading to hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). This study analyzed the occult HBV-genotypes in HCC patients.

METHODS: To achieve our objective, matched serum and tissue samples were collected from 40 HCC patients. Three sets of primers were used for the HBV-DNA detection by nested-PCR, which cover the HBV-genome; Core, Surface and X genes. Genotyping system based on PCR using type-specific primers was applied on HBV-DNA positive samples.

RESULTS: Intrahepatic occult HBV-DNA was detected in 62.5%, whereas; Serum occult HBV-DNA were detected in only 22.5% of HCC patients. In patients' positive for both anti-HBs and anti-HBc, 10% had occult HBV in serum. In serologically negative HCV patients, 63% had intrahepatic HBV-DNA, and 21% had HBV-DNA in serum samples. HBV-genotype D (32%) and B (24%) attributed predominantly to intrahepatic HBV infections in HCC patients, whereas HBV-genotype A (4%) and C (8%) infections were the least observed.

CONCLUSION: This is the first study to show the genotypes of occult HBV infection in HCC Patients. We suggest that B or D may influence the outcome of HBV infection which may lead to the development of HCC.