Article Abstract

Low prevalence of human T lymphocyte virus in blood donors in Guangdong, China

Authors: Zhengang Shan, Qiao Liao, Jieting Huang, Ru Xu, Min Wang, Ke Huang, Xi Tang, Tingting Li, Kenrad Nelson, Chengyao Li, Xia Rong, Yongshui Fu


Background: To investigate the prevalence of human T lymphocyte virus (HTLV) in blood donors in Guangdong province, China.
Methods: The enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was applied for primary screening of anti-HTLV-I/II antibodies in blood donors. Reactive samples were subjected to secondary detection using the electrochemiluminescence immunoassay (ECLIA). Samples reactive for both ELISA and ECLIA were further identified by nucleic acid testing (NAT) and Western-blot (WB).
Results: A total of 2,058,790 samples collected from 20 blood stations across the whole province of Guangdong were screened through March 2016 to February 2018. Among them, 758 samples were reactive with ELISA, and 182 were reactive with followed ECLIA detection. Of ECLIA reactive samples, 43 were identified positive by NAT and WB, accounting for an overall positive rate of 0.002% (43/2,058,790). Forty-three positive samples were classified as HTLV-I, and no HTLV-II was identified.
Conclusions: The prevalence of HTLV-I was approximately 1:50,000, that was low in blood donor population in Guangdong province. In term of blood safety, a leukocyte filtration for blood components might reduce the risk of HTLV-1 transmission in transfusion, which could be also considered as an alternative of high cost blood screening by the immunoassays and NAT for the viruses in blood donation.