Hepatitis Delta Virus in Patients Referred for Malaria Parasite Test in Ile-Ife, Nigeria

Olufisayo Adeyemi Adesina, Margaret Oluwatoyin Japhet


Hepatitis delta virus (HDV) infection is considered the most severe form of human viral hepatitis. The infection only occurs in the presence of a concomitant hepatitis B virus (HBV) and leads to severe liver disease that includes fulminant liver failure and rapid progression to cirrhosis, as well as increased risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). Diverse data exist on HBsAg carrier rates, but not much is known about the rates of HDV co-infection in cases of HBV infections in Nigeria. More so, HDV has not been detected in people with unknown HBV status or people who had no clinical evidence of liver disease in Nigeria. We therefore determined the prevalence of HBV and HBV/HDV co-infection in patients without clinical evidence of liver disease referred for malaria parasites test from two health institutions in Ile-Ife, Nigeria, using one step HBsAg diagnostic kit (Nova Diagnostic®, USA) and HDV IgM and IgG ELISA kit (Dia.Pro, Italy). Of the 275 patients tested, 38 (13.8 %) were HBsAg positive and 12 (31.6%) of them had antibody to HDV, hence HBV/HDV prevalence in the study population was 4.4 % (12/275). The result of this study shows a significant HBV/HDV prevalence in the study population, and the need for public enlightenment to further improve management. There is also the need to consider HDV screening in patients with no clinical evidence of liver disease.

Keywords: HDV, Hepatitis B, co-infection,, ELISA, Nigeria

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