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Keywords:

  • hepatitis E virus;
  • Indonesia;
  • zoonosis transmission

ABSTRACT

Hepatitis E is an emerging disease with a high incidence globally. Few data are available on hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection in Indonesia. To obtain molecular information on HEV infection in two regions of Indonesia with different customs and swine breeding conditions, serum samples from 137 swine farm workers, 100 blood donors and 100 swine (27 fecal samples also obtained) in Yogyakarta (Central Java) and from 12 and 64 swine farm workers, 42 and 135 local residents and 89 and 119 swine in Tulungagung (East Java) and Mengwi (Bali), respectively, from our previous study, were compared. Serological tests for anti-HEV antibodies by ELISA, HEV-RNA detection by RT-PCR and phylogenetic analysis were performed. The total prevalence of anti-HEV antibodies in humans was higher in Bali (11.6%) than in Java (5.1%; P = 0.015). No significant differences in anti-HEV prevalence among swine farm workers and local residents in Java were found. The finding of swine HEV genotype 3 in specimens from Yogyakarta and genotype 4 from Tulungagung and Bali is somewhat different from other reports. We suggest other factors in addition to close contact with swine might play an important role in HEV transmission of non-endemic/related custom groups. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report on swine HEV genotype 3 in Indonesia.