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December 7, 1979

Research team isolates major non-A, non-B hepatitis virus

JAMA. 1979;242(23):2517-2518. doi:10.1001/jama.1979.03300230003001

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After nearly a decade of searching by many investigators, French hepatologist Christian Trepo, MD, has presented the first photographs of a non-A, non-B hepatitis virion.

Reporting at the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases meeting in Chicago, Trepo also detailed his experiences with specific serological tests for non-A, non-B viral antigens and antibody.

On the basis of Trepo's findings, many in the audience expressed the belief that practical screening procedures for non-A, non-B hepatitis in banked blood may soon become a reality, thus controlling this infection that comprises nearly 90% of posttransfusion hepatitis.

Since hepatitis A virus rarely, if ever, causes a posttransfusion infection, the development of sensitive screening techniques for hepatitis B virus in the early part of this decade gave hope that transfusionassociated hepatitis would become a rarity. It developed, however, that because of the existence of still another infectious agent, which came to be called