Emergence of hepatitis B virus S gene mutant in a liver transplant recipient

Elisabetta Cariani, Antonella Ravaggi, Elisabetta Tanzi, Luisa Romanò, Gianfranco Fiordalisi, Giorgio Bellati, Lucio Caccamo, Dinangelo Galmarini, Alberto Albertini, Alessandro Zanetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Immunological and genomic analysis of the “a” determinant was carried out in seven patients with concurrent HBsAg and anti‐HBs, four of whom were immunized against hepatitis B virus at liver transplant, two with histologically characterized chronic hepatitis B virus infection, and one HBsAg healthy carrier. The immune reactivity of the HBsAg “a” determinant was evaluated by binding to specific monoclonal antibodies, and the corresponding genomic sequence was studied by differential hybridization in microtiter plates and nucleotide sequence analysis. A double mutation generating an amino acid change (glycine to lysine) at residue 145, able to impair recognition by monoclonal antibodies, was observed in the post‐transplant serum from one patient. No significant alteration of the “a” determinant sequence or reactivity was detected in the other patients. Amino acid residue 145 appears therefore to be critical for the recognition by anti‐HBs antibodies. A previously undescribed glycine to lysine substitution at this level interferes with the immune reactivity of the “a” determinant. © Wiley‐Liss, Inc.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)410-415
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Medical Virology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1995


  • DNA enzyme immunoassay
  • escape mutants
  • HBsAg “a” determinant
  • monoclonal antibodies
  • polymerase chain reaction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology


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