Whole-genome sequencing of human Pegivirus variant from an Egyptian patient co-infected with hepatitis C virus: A case report

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Abstract

Background: Human pegivirus (HPgV) is structurally similar to hepatitis C virus (HCV) and was discovered 20 years ago. Its distribution, natural history and exact rule of this viral group in human hosts remain unclear. Our aim was to determine, by deep next-generation sequencing (NGS), the entire genome sequence of HPgV that was discovered in an Egyptian patient while analyzing HCV sequence from the same patient. We also inspected whether the co-infection of HCV and HPgV will affect the patient response to HCV viral treatment. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report for a newly isolated HPgV in an Egyptian patient who is co-infected with HCV. Case presentation: The deep Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) technique was used to detect HCV sequence in hepatitis C patient's plasma. The results revealed the presence of HPgV with HCV. This co-infection was confirmed using conventional PCR of the HPgV 5′ untranslated region. The patient was then subjected to direct-acting-antiviral treatment (DAA). At the end of the treatment, the patient showed a good response to the HCV treatment (i.e., no HCV-RNA was detected in the plasma), while the HPgV-RNA was still detected. Sequence alignment and phylogenetic analyses demonstrated that the detected HPgV was a novel isolate and was not previously published. Conclusion: We report a new variant of HPgV in a patient suffering from hepatitis C viral infection.

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Soliman, H. K., Abouelhoda, M., El Rouby, M. N., Ahmed, O. S., Esmat, G., Hassan, Z. K., … Zekri, A. R. N. (2019). Whole-genome sequencing of human Pegivirus variant from an Egyptian patient co-infected with hepatitis C virus: A case report. Virology Journal, 16(1). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12985-019-1242-5

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