Distribution of hepatitis C virus genotypes and subtypes in a group of patients with chronic hepatitis C from Canton Sarajevo, 2012-2018

Irma Salimović- Bešić, Adna Kahriman, Suzana Arapčić, Amela Dedeić- Ljubović


Background: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotypes and subtypes exhibit significant geographic variations.

Aim: To analyse the distribution of genotypes/subtypes of HCV in a group of patients with chronic hepatitis C from Canton Sarajevo during 2012-2018.

Material and methods:The study enrolled 247 human plasma samples of HCV-RNA positive patients with available results of HCV genotyping test.

Results: During 2012-2018, the domination of subtypes 1a (34.01%), 1b (28.34%) and genotype 3 (23.89%) was registered. In 2012 and 2013, HCV subtype 1a was the most common (27/63; 42.86% and 17/40; 42.50%, respectively). In 2014, the leading HCV genotype/subtype were 3 and 1b (17/57; 29.82%). In 2015, the dominance of HCV genotype 3 (14/39; 35.90%) continued, while in 2016, the same number of HCV subtypes 1a and 1b (11/30; 36.67%) was recorded. Although in a small number of tested, during 2017, HCV subtype 1b was the most prevalent (7/14; 50.00%), and in 2018, it was replaced by a HCV subtype 1a (3/4; 75.00%). Distribution of HCV genotypes/subtypes by age group of patients varied significantly (p=0.000). The largest number of patients (71/247; 28.74%) belonged to the age category 30-39 years and HCV genotypes/subtypes 1, 3, 4, 1a and 1b were identified. Except in 2017, male gender significantly dominated (p=0.000). In males, HCV subtype 1a (68/170; 40.00%) was the most common, while in women it was HCV subtype 1b (44/77; 57.14%).

Conclusion: This six-year retrospective study showed the time variations of the circulating HCV genotypes/subtypes among patients with chronic hepatitis C in Canton Sarajevo. Genotyping of the HCV has an important implications for diagnosis and treatment of the patients.


hepatitis C, genotype, prevalence

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DOI: 10.5457/ams.v49i0.524