Document Detail

Epidemiology of hepatitis E: current status.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19686410     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Hepatitis E, caused by infection with hepatitis E virus (HEV), is a common cause of acute hepatitis in areas with poor sanitation. The virus has four genotypes with one serotype: genotypes 1 and 2 exclusively infect humans, whereas genotypes 3 and 4 also infect other animals, particularly pigs. In endemic areas, both large outbreaks of acute hepatitis as well as sporadic cases occur frequently. These cases are usually due to genotype 1 or 2 HEV and are predominantly caused by fecal-oral transmission, usually through contamination of drinking water; contaminated food, materno-fetal (vertical spread) and parenteral routes are less common modes of infection. The acute hepatitis caused by this virus has the highest attack rates in young adults and the disease is particularly severe among pregnant women. HEV superinfection can occur among persons with pre-existing chronic liver disease. In non-endemic regions, locally acquired disease was believed to be extremely uncommon. However, in recent years, an increasing number of cases, due mostly due to genotype 3 or 4 HEV, have been recognized. These are more often elderly men who have other coexisting illnesses, and appear to be related to zoonotic transmission from pigs, wild boars and deer, either food-borne or otherwise. Also, chronic infection with genotype 3 HEV has been reported among immunosuppressed persons in these regions. A subunit vaccine has been shown to be effective in preventing clinical disease, but is not yet commercially available. Our understanding of hepatitis E epidemiology has undergone major changes in recent years, and the future may hold even more surprises.
Rakesh Aggarwal; Sita Naik
Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Review     Date:  2009-08-03
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of gastroenterology and hepatology     Volume:  24     ISSN:  1440-1746     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Gastroenterol. Hepatol.     Publication Date:  2009 Sep 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-09-11     Completed Date:  2009-11-23     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8607909     Medline TA:  J Gastroenterol Hepatol     Country:  Australia    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1484-93     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Gastroenterology, Sanjay Gandhi Postgraduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Lucknow, India.
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MeSH Terms
Acute Disease
Chronic Disease
Communicable Disease Control
Disease Outbreaks*
Disease Reservoirs
Endemic Diseases*
Hepatitis Antibodies / blood
Hepatitis E / complications,  diagnosis,  epidemiology*,  prevention & control,  transmission
Hepatitis E virus / genetics,  immunology,  pathogenicity*
Liver Cirrhosis / epidemiology,  virology
Seroepidemiologic Studies
Viral Hepatitis Vaccines
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Hepatitis Antibodies; 0/Viral Hepatitis Vaccines

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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