Seroprevalence of antibodies to hepatitis E virus in two large communities in Havana, Cuba

María C Montalvo Villalba, Ming Guan, Antonio Pérez, Marité Bello Corredor, Susel Sariego Frometa, Aidonis Gutiérrez Moreno, Wei P. Hu, Teresa Howard, Licel A Rodríguez Lay, David Anderson

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18 Citations (Scopus)


Hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection is an important cause of acute viral hepatitis in tropical and sub-tropical regions that occurs both as epidemic episodes and sporadic cases. The aim of this investigation was to estimate the prevalence of total immunoglobulin (Ig) anti-hepatitis E virus (anti-HEV) and the risk factors associated to two communities in Havana City. Serum samples (n=469) obtained from healthy individuals with no history of viral hepatitis were screened for total anti-HEV by enzyme immunoassay (EIA). An overall prevalence of 10% (47/469) (95% CI; 7.52-13.19%) was obtained. Higher anti-HEV prevalence was found in the municipality of Marianao (12.1%) compared to Playa (7.1%). Analysis of risk factors revealed a significant association of total anti-HEV prevalence in age group 41-60 years old, with a risk ratio of 3.21 (95% CI: 1.09-9.7) (P=0.01). No relation was found between anti-HEV and other variables such as gender, risk occupations, surgery and transfusions. The detection of total anti-HEV in individuals with no overt acute hepatitis suggests the existence of sub-clinical or anicteric HEV infection in these municipalities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)772-776
Number of pages5
JournalTransactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Anti-HEV
  • Cuba
  • Epidemiology
  • Hepatitis
  • Hepatitis E virus
  • Risk factors

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