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March 8, 1976

Hepatitis B Surface Antigen and Antibody in Asymptomatic Blood Donors

Author Affiliations

From the Liver Clinic, Department of Medicine, Mount Sinai Hospital, University of Toronto (Drs Sinclair, Feinman, and Berris), and the Toronto Blood Transfusion Centre, Canadian Red Cross (Dr Wrobel).

JAMA. 1976;235(10):1014-1017. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03260360016017

Seventy-two volunteer blood donors who had hepatitis B surface antibody (anti-HBs) were studied and compared with 115 carriers of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg). Anti-HBs-positive donors gave a history of greater possible exposure to hepatitis B virus, there was a lower male-female ratio, and they had a much lower frequency of abnormal hepatic function test results. Those who were positive by counterimmunoelectrophoresis (CIEP), which indicated a high titer of antibody (>1:2,000 as measured by passive hemagglutination assay [PHA]), also had an ethnic origin similar to that of the donor panel, ie, predominantly Canadian and northern European. The HBsAg carriers, on the other hand, had a high frequency of origin from Mediterranean and Far Eastern countries. Low-antibody-titer (positive PHA but negative CIEP) donors had ethnic origins that more closely approximated those of HBsAg carriers.

(JAMA 235:1014-1017, 1976)