Genetic diversity of GBV-C/HGV strains among HIV infected-IVDU and blood donors from Buenos Aires, Argentina

J. R. Oubiña, V. Mathet, M. Feld, M. P. Della Latta, D. Ferrario, R. Verdun, O. Libonatti, J. Fernández, G. Carballal, D. O. Sánchez, J. F. Quarleri

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15 Scopus citations


GBV-C/HGV RNA was investigated in serum samples from 70 HIV(+) intravenous drug users (IVDU), as well as from 200 blood donors from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Viral RNA was demonstrated in 21 IVDU by reverse transcription-nested PCR of the 5' UTR. c-DNA amplified products were analyzed and their sequences compared with those downloaded from GenBank. A phylogenetic tree based on 171 sequences demonstrated the presence of three major genogroups, including two subgroups, within local samples, i.e. group 1 (n = 1), 2a (n = 11), 2b (n = 4) and 3 (n = 5). These results agreed entirely with those obtained by a novel RFLP (J. Clin. Microbiol. 37, 1340-1347, 1999) of the same 5' UTR amplicons. As expected, GBV-C/HGV RNA prevalence was significantly higher among IVDU than among blood donors (P < 0.0001), although within the latter group an unexpectedly high rate was also detected, since 11 of 200 sera (5.5%) proved positive. These viral isolates were ascribed either to subgroup 2a (n = 5), subgroup 2b (n = 5) or genogroup 3 (n = 1). Briefly, this partial view of GBV-C/HGV molecular epidemiology in Argentina shows: (i) different rates of GBV-C/HGV infection within both IVDU and blood donors; (ii) a high prevalence of viral RNA among blood donors; and (iii) a predominant circulation of genogroup 2, with minor contribution of groups 3 and 1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)121-129
Number of pages9
JournalVirus Research
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 15 1999
Externally publishedYes


  • GBV-C
  • HGV
  • Molecular epidemiology
  • Viral genogroups

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research
  • Molecular Biology
  • Virology


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