Specific mutations of basal core promoter are associated with chronic liver disease in hepatitis B virus subgenotype D1 prevalent in Turkey

Authors


Correspondence

Masaya Sugiyama, Department of Hepatic Diseases, The Research Center for Hepatitis and Immunology, National Center for Global Health and Medicine, Ichikawa 272-8516, Japan

Tel: +81 47 372 3501; fax: +81 47 375 4766; email: m.sugiyama@hospk.ncgm.go.jp

Abstract

The role of hepatitis B virus (HBV) genetics in the clinical manifestations of infection is being increasingly recognized. Genotype D is one of eight currently recognized major HBV genotypes. The virus is ubiquitous worldwide, but shows different features in different regions. One hundred and ninety-eight patients with chronic HBV infection were enrolled in this study, 38 of whom had been diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver and/or hepatocellular carcinoma. HBV DNA was isolated from the patients' blood samples and the entire genome and/or the basal core promoter/core promoter region sequenced. Phylogenetic analysis of the complete genomes revealed that subgenotype D1 is the most prevalent subgenotype in Turkey, but there was no definite phylogenetic grouping according to geography for isolates from different regions within Turkey, or for isolates in Turkey relative to other parts of the world. Turkish isolates tended to be genetically similar to European and central Asian isolates. Overall, HBV-infection in Turkey appears to be characterized by early HBeAg seroconversion, a high incidence of the A1896 core promoter mutation and a small viral load. Genotype D characteristic mutations A1757 and T1764/G1766 were found in the BCP region. T1773 was associated with T1764/G1766 and a larger viral load. In conclusion, infection with HBV genotype D in Turkey has a similar clinical outcome to that of Europe and central Asia. Genotypic mutations in genotype D may be linked with disease prognosis in Turkey, but further studies with higher sample numbers and balanced clinical groups are needed to confirm this.

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