The Karens, or ‘old settlers’, migrated from Myanmar to Andaman and Nicobar islands 80 years ago. A high HBV exposure rate among them has been reported. A study of 34 HBsAg carriers was done to investigate the origin of HBV infection among the Karens. RFLP-based genotyping was confirmed by sequencing and phylogenetic analysis. The predominance of HBV/C1/Cs suggests that they carried HBV during their migration, retained it, and in addition, acquired HBV/D2 from the people of mainland India. The reported association of HBV genotype C with disease severity thus warrants further epidemiological investigations among them and on possible spread among neighboring settlers.
Archives of Virology – Springer Journals
Published: Jun 1, 2007
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