DECLINING PREVALENCE OF HEPATITIS E ANTIBODIES AMONG DANISH BLOOD DONORS
ISBT Education. Kinggaard Holm D. 05/31/14; 51266; P-324 Topic: Blood donor deferral
Dorte Kinggaard Holm
Dorte Kinggaard Holm
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Abstract
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Background:
Rising incidence of reported hepatitis E cases in Europe has focused attention on hepatitis E virus (HEV) and the risk of transfusion transmitted hepatitis E. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of antibodies to HEV (anti-HEV) among Danish blood donors in 2013 and to compare it to previous studies in Denmark. In addition we wanted to compare the relative sensitivity of two different assays.

Materials and Methods:
Samples from 506 blood donors were collected and analyzed for anti-HEV with an in-house assay developed at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In addition the samples were analyzed with the Wantai anti-HEV assay. Demographic information and possible HEV exposure was collected by self-administered questionnaire.

Results:
Using the NIH assay the prevalence of anti-HEV among Danish blood donors was 10.7 % and with the Wantai assay the prevalence of anti-HEV was 19.8 % (p<0.001). In both cases the presence of anti-HEV was significantly correlated with increasing age. In addition, anti-HEV as measured by the Wantai test was significant associated with contact with children (p=0.01). But in multivariate analysis only age was associated with anti-HEV in both assays. By the NIH assay the prevalence had declined from 20.6% in 2003 to 10.7% in 2013.

Conclusions:
Anti-HEV prevalence had decreased by half among Danish blood donors over 10 years, but was still highly prevalent. The difference in sensitivity of the two assays demonstrates the importance of using the same assay when comparing the anti-HEV prevalence in populations over and time.
Background:
Rising incidence of reported hepatitis E cases in Europe has focused attention on hepatitis E virus (HEV) and the risk of transfusion transmitted hepatitis E. The aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence of antibodies to HEV (anti-HEV) among Danish blood donors in 2013 and to compare it to previous studies in Denmark. In addition we wanted to compare the relative sensitivity of two different assays.

Materials and Methods:
Samples from 506 blood donors were collected and analyzed for anti-HEV with an in-house assay developed at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In addition the samples were analyzed with the Wantai anti-HEV assay. Demographic information and possible HEV exposure was collected by self-administered questionnaire.

Results:
Using the NIH assay the prevalence of anti-HEV among Danish blood donors was 10.7 % and with the Wantai assay the prevalence of anti-HEV was 19.8 % (p<0.001). In both cases the presence of anti-HEV was significantly correlated with increasing age. In addition, anti-HEV as measured by the Wantai test was significant associated with contact with children (p=0.01). But in multivariate analysis only age was associated with anti-HEV in both assays. By the NIH assay the prevalence had declined from 20.6% in 2003 to 10.7% in 2013.

Conclusions:
Anti-HEV prevalence had decreased by half among Danish blood donors over 10 years, but was still highly prevalent. The difference in sensitivity of the two assays demonstrates the importance of using the same assay when comparing the anti-HEV prevalence in populations over and time.
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