An enzyme-linked (alkaline phosphatase) oligonucleotide probe for the detection of serum hepatitis B virus DNA


Departamento de Microbiología, Facultad de Medicina. Av. Madrid-11, Granada, 18012, Spain


Abstract: Serum HBV-DNA detection represents a new and important diagnostic tool for the hepatologist, as well as a prognostic and therapeutic guide. Though most laboratories use genomic radioactive probes, the appearance of commercially available enzyme-linked oligonucleotide probes, which simplify the method, represents an advance in HBV-DNA detection. In order to verify the value of an enzyme-linked (alkaline phosphatase) oligonucleotide probe in HBV-DNA detection, we have first compared the results of the detection of serum HBV-DNA in 46 patients at different serological stages of HBV infection using this probe and with those obtained using a genomic P32-labeled probe. Fisher's test analysis of the results shows statistical significance; this indicates a high correlation between methods. Secondly, we have tested 296 sera of patients at different serological stages of HBV infection with the enzyme-linked probe; we have found HBV-DNA in 8 patients with acute hepatitis (61.54%), 61 HBeAg (70.12%), and 7 anti-HBe (12.07%) chronic hepatitis. These results show the value of this probe for routine survey of serum HBV-DNA using a simple method which avoids the use of radioactivity.