Presence of human hepegivirus-1 in a cohort of people who inject drugs

Post Date: 
2017-06-07
Publication: 
Annals of Internal Medicine
Summary: 
Background
Next-generation metagenomic sequencing (NGMS) has opened new frontiers in microbial discovery but has been clinically characterized in only a few settings.
 
Objective
To explore the plasma virome of persons who inject drugs and to characterize the sensitivity and accuracy of NGMS compared with quantitative clinical standards.
 
Results
Next-generation metagenomic sequencing generated a total of 600 million reads, which included the expected HIV and HCV RNA sequences. HIV and HCV reads were consistently identified only when samples contained more than 10 000 copies/mL or IU/mL, respectively, as determined by quantitative PCR. A novel RNA virus, human hepegivirus-1 (HHpgV-1), was also detected by NGMS in 4 samples from 2 persons in the clinical trial. Through use of a quantitative PCR assay for HHpgV-1, infection was also detected in 17 (10.9%) of 156 members of a cohort of persons who injected drugs. In these persons, HHpgV-1 viremia persisted for a median of at least 4538 days and was associated with detection of other bloodborne viruses, such as HCV RNA and SEN virus D.
 
Citation: 
Kandathil AJ, Breitwieser FP, Sachithanandham J, Robinson M, Mehta SH, Timp W, Salzberg SL, Thomas DL, Balagopal A. Presence of human hepegivirus-1 in a cohort of people who inject drugs, Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 6 June 2017] doi: 10.7326/M17-0085. PMID: 28586923.