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Prevalence of HTLV-I Infection in Patients with Thalassemia Major in Mazandaran, North of Iran

Author(s): Javad Ghaffari | Mehrnoush Kowsarian | Mohammad Mahdavi | Koroush Vahid Shahi | Houshang Rafatpanah | Amir Tafreshian

Journal: Jundishapur Journal of Microbiology
ISSN 2008-3645

Volume: 6;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 57;
Date: 2013;
Original page

Keywords: HTLV-I infections | Thalassemia | Polymerase Chain Reaction

Background: Human T-lymphotropic virus type I (HTLV-I) is one of the health threatening problems in endemic areas and can be transmitted by different routes such as blood transfusion. In order to correct chronic anemia in thalassemia subjects, they may need to get blood units per month. Thus, they are at risk of infection with blood-borne viruses such as HTLV-I..Objectives: In the present study, we investigated the prevalence of HTLV-I infection among high risk patients with thalassemia in north of Iran, Mazandaran..Patients and Methods: A total number of 288 thalassemia patients including 151 females (52.4%) and 137 males (47.6%) with mean age of 21.45 ± 6.6 years were tested for HTLV-I Ig G and Ig M antibodies against gag proteins by enzyme linked immuniosorbent assay (ELISA). Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test was applied to confirm HTLV-I infection in DNA samples of antibody positive subjects..Results: In the primary screening by ELISA, 20 out of 288 (6.9%) patients were positive for HTLV-I antibody. The PCR results confirmed that four out of 20 samples (1.4%) were HTLV-I positive..Conclusions: The seroprevalence of HTLV-I infection in patients with thalassemia in Mazandaran province compared to other parts of Iran was not too high; however, HTLV-I screening should be performed prior to blood transfusions to decline the risk of virus transmission in these patients.
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