1887

Abstract

The intrahost hepatitis B virus (HBV) genomic evolution process of an HBe antigen (HBeAg)-negative chronic HBV patient (designated RI) was studied. Two nearly full-length direct sequences obtained in 1995 (RI95) and 1998 (RI98) showed: (a) a mutation rate of 2.7×10 nucleotides per site per year; (b) nucleotide changes mainly located at single coding regions (=0.002); (c) mixed populations; and (d) a predominance of non-synonymous substitutions (=0.0036). Population heterogeneity was assessed by cloning and sequencing of a fragment spanning nearly half the genome. Two-thirds of the analysed clones exhibited long nucleotide deletions. Pairwise genetic diversity revealed that diversity was higher for RI95 than for RI98 cloned sequences. In conclusion, a highly heterogeneous genomic population circulated within patient RI, which might support the persistence of HBV. Finally, the structure of the deletant genomes suggests that they might serve as intermediates for integration to the host-cell genome.

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2007-01-01
2020-01-22
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