Anti-Hepatitis B Surface Antibody (Anti-HBsAb) in a Representative Population of Ozuoba in Rivers State, Nigeria  Pages 9-15

O.E. Agbagwa, T.F. Simon and I.O. Okonko

Medical Microbiology Unit, Department of Microbiology, University of Port Harcourt. P.M.B 5323, Choba, East-West Road Port Harcourt, Rivers State, 500102, Nigeria


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Abstract: Background: Hepatitis B infection is a foremost worldwide health issue of public health significance and chief origin of chronic hepatitis, cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). There are vaccines available for hepatitis B infection which can be used for prevention before infection. In an effort to prevent and control HBV, the Nigeria Government in 2004 made HBV vaccine as part of national immunization programme. This definitely is an essential procedure to minimize the occurrence of HBV in many countries. Thus, our study was designed to investigate the seroprevalence of hepatitis B surface antibody (HBsAb) in a representative population of Ozuoba in Rivers State, Nigeria following the incorporation of HBV vaccine into NPI schedule.
Methods: Ninety (90) blood samples were obtained from a male and female population of Ozuoba community in Rivers State, Nigeria. Questionnaires were distributed to obtain demographic profile of participants. ELISA (DIA.PRO Diagnostic Bioprobes, Milano-Italy) was employed for the qualitative and quantitative evaluation of HBsAb in sera and plasma of representative population of Ozuoba in Rivers State, Nigeria. The serological evaluation and result interpretation were carried out as stipulated by the kit’s manufacturers. We engaged Fisher’s exact test and Chi-square test to estimate variances amid groups at p < 0.05 significance. Results: Of the 90 participants evaluated, nine tested seropositive for HBsAb giving a general prevalence of 10.0% and a seronegativity of 90.0%. The sex-related prevalence was males (7.1%) and females (12.5%). Sex and age had no effect in hepatitis B surface antibody (p-value >0.05). The age-specific prevalence was 7.7% for age group 13-19 years, 10.2% for 20-35 years of age and 10.7% for 36 years and above.
Conclusion: This study revealed that the presence of HBsAb was low (10.0%). Our outcomes indicted that seropositivity and seronegativity of HBsAb have no significant relationship with age and sex. It further showed that 90.0% were HBsAb seronegative and hence, more susceptible to HBV infection. Vaccination programme must be strengthened further to grasp those continuing at highest risk.

Keywords: Anti-HBsAb, Antibody, ELISA, HBsAb, HBV, Prevalence, Nigeria.
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