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Seroprevalence Study of Anti-HEV IgG among Different Adult Populations in Corsica, France, 2019

Abstract : Hepatitis E virus (HEV) is a major cause of acute hepatitis worldwide. In France, hyperendemic areas including Corsica have an anti-HEV Immunoglobulin G (IgG) prevalence higher than 50%. The aim of this study was to determine the seroprevalence of anti-HEV IgG in three adult populations in Corsica and the risk factors associated with antibody detection. Between 2017 and 2019, a total of 930 individuals, including 467 blood donors, 393 students or university staff members and 70 patients from general practice, were tested for the presence of anti-HEV IgG using the Wantai HEV IgG enzyme immunoassay kit and filled a questionnaire. The association between seropositivity and potential risk factors was tested with univariate and multivariate analyses. Out of the 930 samples, 52.3% (486/930) were seropositive-54.4% (254/467) among blood donors, 47.6% (187/393) among university students and 64.3% (45/70) among patients of general practice. Three main risk factors were identified: (i) skinning and butchering (Adjusted Odds Ratio aOR = 2.76, 95% confidence interval [95% CI] [1.51-5.37]; p-value < 10-3), (ii) consumption of a local pork live raw sausage (fittonu) (aOR = 1.95 95% CI [1.45-2.64]; p-value = 10-5), and (iii) increasing age (p-value = 0.003). Seropositivity rates between the different populations were homogeneous after age stratification. This cross-sectional study indicates a high anti-HEV IgG seroprevalence in the Corsican adult population, not significantly different between women and men and increasing with age. This serosurvey also showed homogeneity regarding the exposure to HEV among three different types of populations. Finally, we confirmed the endemicity of Corsica with respect to HEV and identified a strong association between consumption of figatellu/fittonu and the practice of skinning and butchering with the detection of anti-HEV IgG.
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Lisandru Capai, Shirley Masse, Pierre Gallian, Cécile Souty, Christine Isnard, et al.. Seroprevalence Study of Anti-HEV IgG among Different Adult Populations in Corsica, France, 2019. Microorganisms, MDPI, 2019, 7 (10), pii: E460. ⟨10.3390/microorganisms7100460⟩. ⟨inserm-02417196⟩



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