Spatiotemporal reconstruction of the introduction of hepatitis C virus into Scotland and its subsequent regional transmission

McNaughton, A. L., Cameron, I. D., Wignall-Fleming, E. B., Biek, R. , McLauchlan, J., Gunson, R. N., Templeton, K., Tan, H. M.-L. and McWilliam Leitch, E. C. (2015) Spatiotemporal reconstruction of the introduction of hepatitis C virus into Scotland and its subsequent regional transmission. Journal of Virology, 89(22), pp. 11223-11232. (doi:10.1128/JVI.02106-15) (PMID:26311892) (PMCID:PMC4645645)

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Abstract

A more comprehensive understanding of hepatitis C virus (HCV) transmission dynamics could facilitate public health initiatives to reduce the prevalence of HCV in people who inject drugs. We aimed to determine how HCV sequences entered and spread throughout Scotland and to identify transmission hot spots. A Scottish data set with embedded demographic data was created by sequencing the NS5B of 125 genotype 1a (Gt1a) samples and 166 Gt3a samples and analyzed alongside sequences from public databases. Applying Bayesian inference methods, we reconstructed the global origin and local spatiotemporal dissemination of HCV in Scotland. Scottish sequences mainly formed discrete clusters interspersed between sequences from the rest of the world; the most recent common ancestors of these clusters dated to 1942 to 1952 (Gt1a) and 1926 to 1942 (Gt3a), coincident with global diversification and distribution. Extant Scottish sequences originated in Edinburgh (Gt1a) and Glasgow (Gt3a) in the 1970s, but both genotypes spread from Glasgow to other regions. The dominant Gt1a strain differed between Edinburgh (cluster 2 [C2]), Glasgow (C3), and Aberdeen (C4), whereas significant Gt3a strain specificity occurred only in Aberdeen. Specific clusters initially formed separate transmission zones in Glasgow that subsequently overlapped, occasioning city-wide cocirculation. Transmission hot spots were detected with 45% of samples from patients residing in just 9 of Glasgow's 57 postcode districts. HCV was introduced into Scotland in the 1940s, concomitant with its worldwide dispersal likely arising from global-scale historical events. Cluster-specific transmission hubs were identified in Glasgow, the key Scottish city implicated in HCV dissemination. This fine-scale spatiotemporal reconstruction improves understanding of HCV transmission dynamics in Scotland.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Cameron, Mr Iain and Leitch, Dr carol and Biek, Dr Roman and Gunson, Dr Rory and McLauchlan, Professor John
Authors: McNaughton, A. L., Cameron, I. D., Wignall-Fleming, E. B., Biek, R., McLauchlan, J., Gunson, R. N., Templeton, K., Tan, H. M.-L., and McWilliam Leitch, E. C.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Biodiversity Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Infection Immunity and Inflammation
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Journal of Virology
Publisher:American Society for Microbiology
ISSN:0022-538X
ISSN (Online):1098-5514
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2015 American Society for Microbiology
First Published:First published in Journal of Virology 89(22):11223-11232
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
656341Virus-host interactions in hepatitis C virus infectionJohn MclauchlanMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12014/1MVLS III - CENTRE FOR VIRUS RESEARCH