This study aimed to determine the relationship between hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection and ABO/Rhesus blood groups, age and sex. A total of 20 000 patients who came to donate blood in the blood bank of GSVM Medical College, Kanpur were enrolled in the study. Demographic data recorded for each patient included age, sex and blood group. Blood samples were tested for anti-HCV antibodies and ABO/Rhesus blood group antigen typing was performed. The overall positive rate of anti-HCV was 0·34%. We found that seropositivity for HCV increased with age. Anti-HCV antibodies were detected in 1/765 women (0·13%), compared to 67/19 235 men (0·35%). Seroprevalence of HCV was found to be higher in blood group O individuals (0·42%) and lowest in blood group AB individuals (0·04%). The results of this study demonstrate that that HCV infection may not be related to age and sex but the possible association of blood group antigens with HCV infection cannot be ruled out.
(Accepted October 13 2009)
(Online publication December 14 2009)
c1 Author for correspondence: Professor T. N. Dhole, Department of Microbiology, Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences, Raibarelli Road, Lucknow, U.P., India 226014. (Email: [email protected])