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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 25  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 96

Hepatitis C virus in Iran; transmission routes, growth in 3a genotype distribution, and lack of liver marker relation with genotypes

Department of Biology, Islamshahr Branch, Islamic Azad University, Islamshahr, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Laleh Babaeekhou
Department of Biology, Islamshahr Branch, Islamic Azad University, Sayyad Shirazi St., Islamshahr
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jrms.JRMS_482_19

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Background: The hepatitis C virus (HCV) outbreak in Iran is increasing. This study investigated the dissemination and transmission routes of HCV genotypes in different regions of Iran. The relationship between serum biochemical markers and viral genotypes was also assessed to find whether liver enzymes level can be considered as the markers for HCV genotypes. Materials and Methods: HCV-infected patients from different provinces of Iran (from August 2017 to March 2019) were enrolled. Nested reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-restriction fragment length polymorphism and real-time PCR were used to discover the genotypes. The infection transmission routes in the study population were investigated and recorded. Serum samples with equal viral loud from the patients without other liver disorders were recruited to explore the association between the genotypes and the liver biochemical markers. Results: One thousand serum samples positive for the HCV genome were recruited. Genotype 3a was the most prevalent in the north, while genotype 1a was dominant at the center. In total, genotype 3a was the dominant genotype closely followed by 1a. Needle sharing by addicts was the most common transmission way of infection in Iran. This way was also the most for genotype 3a dissemination, and genotype 1a was transmitted mostly between family members. No significant association (P > 0.05) was observed between biochemical marker titers and HCV genotypes. Conclusion: A shift in the distribution profile of HCV genotypes, related to the transmission routes, has happened over time. Public awareness of the main routes of HCV transmission can break the cycle of transmission. Liver enzyme values in HCV-infected patients showed no relation with genotypes and only represented hepatocellular dysfunction.

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