1887

Abstract

Coinfection with more than one hepatitis C virus (HCV) genotype is common, but its dynamics, particularly during antiviral treatment, remain largely unknown. We employed next-generation sequencing (NGS) to analyse sequential serum and peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) samples in seven patients with transient presence or permanent genotype change during antiviral treatment with interferon and ribavirin. Specimens were collected right before the therapy initiation and at 2, 4, 6, 8, 12, 20, 24, 36, 44 and 48 weeks during treatment and 6 months after treatment ceased. A mixture of two different genotypes was detected in the pretreatment samples from five patients and the minor genotype constituted 0.02 to 38 %. A transient or permanent change of the predominant genotype was observed in six patients. In three cases genotype 3 was replaced as the predominant genotype by genotype 4, in two cases genotype 3 was replaced by genotype 1, and in one subject genotype 1 was replaced by genotype 4. The PBMC- and serum-derived sequences were frequently discordant with respect to genotype and/or genotype proportions. In conclusion, pre-existing minor HCV genotypes can be selected rapidly during antiviral treatment and become transiently or permanently predominant. In coinfections involving genotype 3, genotype 3 was eliminated first from both the serum and PBMC compartments. The PBMC- and serum-derived HCV sequences were frequently discordant with respect to genotype and/or genotype proportions, suggesting that they constitute separate compartments with their own dynamics.

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2018-11-05
2019-10-21
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