Intra-host genetic diversity of Hepatitis B virus among mother-infant pairs in Botswana


  • Miss Lynnette Bhebhe

    Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute Partnership, Botswana

Project summary

Hepatitis B virus (HBV) leads to a liver infection which results in 820,000 deaths annually. HBV is mainly transmitted from mother-to-child in areas where HBV is common, and infections acquired during childhood are more likely to become lifelong. There is a global plan to eliminate HBV by 2030, and to achieve this, prevention strategies must be improved in every country. We will test for HBV and explore the viral factors that leads to failure of the vaccine and severe disease. We will examine how viral levels and viral diversity change over time in infants. The data from this project will help policy makers in Botswana develop new prevention strategies against HBV infection as part of the global elimination plan such as routine HBV testing for all pregnant women as part of antenatal care services and to develop improved vaccines.