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Revista Médica del Uruguay

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COLINA, Rodney; MOGDASY, María Cristina; CRISTINA, Juan  and  URIARTE, María del Rosario. Caracterización molecular del virus de la hepatitis C en Montevideo-Uruguay. Rev. Méd. Urug. [online]. 2002, vol.18, n.1, pp. 76-82. ISSN 0303-3295.

Summary Background. Hepatitis C virus infection appears to be as one of the main problems associated with emerging infectious diseases. VHC has considerably genetic plasticity; since its categorisation, six primary strains (and an increasingly high number of types) associated with treatment responses and the natural progress of the disease have been identified. Objectives. To improve diagnosis and follow up for patients with VHC, and to broad epidemiological knowledge using molecular analysis in determining genotype and viral charge. Methods. We analysed samples of 175 patients with VHC infectious disease referred from March 1997 to June 2001. All patients underwent ELISA, immunoblot and amplification of VHC through reverse transcription and polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR). Genotype and viral charge were determined in a sub-sample of patients positive for PCR. Results. Viremia was found in 125 out of 175 patients (173 positive serology for VHC and 2 negative serology for VHC). Analysis of restriction polymorphism (RFLP’s) and nucleotide sequence in 51 chronic carriers showed the following distribution of genotypes and types: a) genotype 1: 35 cases [type 1a (17), 1b (16), variants (Mon1 and Mon2)]; b) genotype 2: 3 cases [(type 2ª (1) and 2b (2)], and c) genotype 3: 13 cases [type 3a (13)]. Conclusions. Molecular techniques applied to diagnosis and follow up of patients with HVC infectious disease showed to be a new, specific and highly precise tool. Trough automatic sequential ordering and the subsequent philological analysis two HCV variants have been described. They were been entered at the Gen-Bank as Mon 1 and Mon 2. As there was not been found any association between infectious genotype and viral charge, viremia was genotypically non-dependent.

Keywords : HEPACIVIRUS [genética]; HEPATITIS C [genética]; HEPATITIS C [virología]; GENOTIPO; URUGUAY.

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