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LETTER TO EDITOR  
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 39  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 51-52
 

Molecular detection of window phase hepatitis C virus infection in voluntary blood donors and health care workers in a cohort from Central India


1 Department of Research, Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre, Bhopal; Division of Translational Research, Tata Memorial Centre, ACTREC, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India
2 Department of Research, Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre, Bhopal, India
3 Department of Surgical Gastroenterology, Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre, Bhopal, India
4 Department of Transfusion Medicine, Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre, Bhopal, India

Date of Web Publication4-Feb-2014

Correspondence Address:
Pradyumna Kumar Mishra
Department of Research, Bhopal Memorial Hospital and Research Centre, Bhopal; Division of Translational Research, Tata Memorial Centre, ACTREC, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/0970-0218.126362

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How to cite this article:
Bhargava A, Pathak N, Varshney S, Shrivastava M, Mishra PK. Molecular detection of window phase hepatitis C virus infection in voluntary blood donors and health care workers in a cohort from Central India. Indian J Community Med 2014;39:51-2

How to cite this URL:
Bhargava A, Pathak N, Varshney S, Shrivastava M, Mishra PK. Molecular detection of window phase hepatitis C virus infection in voluntary blood donors and health care workers in a cohort from Central India. Indian J Community Med [serial online] 2014 [cited 2019 Sep 18];39:51-2. Available from: http://www.ijcm.org.in/text.asp?2014/39/1/51/126362


Sir,

Hepatitis C virus (HCV), with its asymptomatic chronic state and an estimation of 170 million infections, is considered as a global health problem. According to recent reports, approximately 12.5 million of the Indian population is suffering from HCV, among which 25% are at risk of developing cirrhosis or hepatocellular carcinoma. [1],[2],[3] Transfusion of infected blood is considered as one of the major threats for HCV transmission, which mainly occurs by the percutaneous exposure of virus to the contaminated blood and plasma derivatives. Although the anti-HCV test is widely used for screening of HCV in blood donors, the test does not effectively detects the "window phase" (first 6 weeks) of the infection, in which the antibody response is negative. [4] Such unidentified HCV-positive individuals are at great risk of transferring the infection to healthy recipients.

The present study aimed at ascertaining such unidentified individuals in a cohort of 1000 voluntary blood donors and 100 health care workers from Central India. All subjects were negative for anti-HCV ELISA (Diasorin S.p.A. Saluggia, Vercelli, Italy), while nucleic acid analysis through Light Cycler 2.0 (Roche Diagnostics, Mannheim, Germany; minimum detection limit 10 copies/mL) using fluorescence resonance energy transfer probes [5] reported three blood donors to be HCV ribonucleic acid (RNA) positive. Linear array polymerase chain reaction (PCR) genotype screening [3] of the positive cases showed the presence of genotype3 [Figure 1] displays linear array genotypic characterization of three identified window phase HCV cases. [Table 1] shows the demographic characteristics of these three subjects.
Table 1: Clinical background of identifi ed window phase hepatitis C virus cases

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Figure 1: Displays linear array genotypic characterization of three identified window phase HCV cases

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We believe that this is the first documented report identifying the window period (anti-HCV negative) of HCV RNA-positive blood donors in this part of the country. In addition, our study also underscores the necessity and importance of implementing careful screening methods for detection of HCV in blood donors and health care workers. For a developing economy like India, devising a cost-effective in-house molecular technology for careful screening in mini-pools of donated blood components looks highly imperative. [2],[6] This would not only pave the way for successful translation of our findings from bench to bedside but also curb transmission risk from transfusion-associated infections in areas of high prevalence.


   Acknowledgments Top


The authors are thankful to Intramural Research Programme of the Bhopal Memorial Hospital Research Centre, Bhopal, India for providing necessary financial assistance.

 
   References Top

1.Bhargava A, Raghuram GV, Pathak N, Varshney S, Jatawa SK, Jain D, et al. Occult hepatitis C virus elicits mitochondrial oxidative stress in lymphocytes and triggers PI3-kinase-mediated DNA damage response. Free Radic Biol Med 2011;51:1806-14.  Back to cited text no. 1
[PUBMED]    
2.Mishra PK, Raghuram GV, Bhargava A, Pathak N. Translation research in molecular disease diagnosis: Bridging gap from laboratory to practice. J Glob Infect Dis 2011;3:205-6.  Back to cited text no. 2
[PUBMED]    
3.Mishra PK, Bhargava A, Khan S, Pathak N, Punde RP, Varshney S. Prevalence of hepatitis C virus genotypes and impact of T helper cytokines in achieving sustained virological response during combination therapy: A study from Central India. Indian J Med Microbiol 2010;28:358-62.  Back to cited text no. 3
[PUBMED]  Medknow Journal  
4.Zou S, Musavi F, Notari EP, Stramer SL, Dodd RY. Prevalence, incidence, and residual risk of major blood-borne infections among apheresis collections to the American Red Cross Blood Services, 2004 through 2008. Transfusion 2010;50:1487-94.  Back to cited text no. 4
[PUBMED]    
5.Mishra PK, Bhargava A, Pathak N, Desikan P, Maudar KK, Varshney S, et al. Molecular surveillance of hepatitis and tuberculosis infections in a cohort exposed to methyl isocyanate. Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2011;24:94-101.  Back to cited text no. 5
[PUBMED]    
6.Bhargava A, Punde R, Varshney S, Pathak N, Mishra PK. A novel FRET probe-based approach for identification, quantification, and characterization of occult HCV infections in patients with cryptogenic liver cirrhosis. Indian J Pathol Microbiol 2011;54:420-1.  Back to cited text no. 6
[PUBMED]  Medknow Journal  


    Figures

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    Tables

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