A novel candidate hepatitis C virus genotype 4 subtype identified by next generation sequencing full-genome characterization in a patient from Saudi Arabia

Mariantonietta Di Stefano, Mona H. Ismail*, Thomas Leitner, Giuseppina Faleo, Marwan Jabr Alwazzeh, Jean Lutamyo Mbisa, Josè Ramon Fiore, Teresa Antonia Santantonio

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Background and aim: Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a major global public health concern, being a leading cause of chronic liver diseases such as chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. The virus is classified into 8 genotypes and 93 subtypes, each displaying distinct geographic distributions. Genotype 4 is the most predominant in the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean and is associated with high rates of hepatitis C infection worldwide. This study used next-generation sequencing to fully characterize the HCV genome and identify a novel subtype within genotype 4 isolated from a 64-year-old Saudi man diagnosed with hepatitis C. Methods: We analyzed the complete genome of the 141-HCV isolate using whole-genome sequencing. Results: Our phylogenetic reconstructions, based on the entire genome of HCV-4 strains, revealed that the 141-HCV isolate formed a distinct group within the genotype 4 classification, providing valuable new insights into the variability of HCV. Conclusion: This discovery of a previously unclassified HCV subtype within genotype 4 sheds light on the ongoing evolution and diversity of the virus. Such knowledge has significant implications for diagnostic and therapeutic approaches, as different subtypes may exhibit varying drug sensitivities and resistance profiles.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1285367
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
Volume14
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2023 Di Stefano, Ismail, Leitner, Faleo, Alwazzeh, Mbisa, Fiore and Santantonio.

Keywords

  • Hepatitis C virus (HCV)
  • Saudi Arabia
  • genotypes
  • next generation sequence
  • subtypes

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