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Byung-Seok Kim 1 Article
A Survey on the Status of Hepatitis E Virus Infection Among Slaughterhouse Workers in South Korea
Byung-Seok Kim, Hyun-Sul Lim, Kwan Lee, Young-Sun Min, Young-Sil Yoon, Hye-Sook Jeong
J Prev Med Public Health. 2015;48(1):53-61.   Published online January 15, 2015
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AbstractAbstract PDF
The seroprevalence of hepatitis E virus (HEV) among high-risk groups overseas is high, but studies in these groups are rare in South Korea. We conducted the present study from April to November 2012 to obtain data on the seroprevalence and associated risk factors for HEV among slaughterhouse workers in South Korea.
Slaughterhouse workers from 80 workplaces nationwide were surveyed in South Korea in 2012. The subjects comprised 1848 cases: 1434 slaughter workers and 414 residual products handlers. By visiting 80 slaughterhouses, which were mixed with 75 of which also performed residual products handling, we conducted a questionnaire survey for risk factors and obtained blood samples in order to determine the seropositivity and seroprevalence of HEV. Anti-HEV IgG and IgM were measured using HEV IgG and IgM enzyme-linked immunospecific assay kits and HEV antigen was measured by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR).
The seropositivity of anti-HEV IgG was 33.5% (slaughter workers 32.8% and residual products handlers 36.2%), and among the seropositive individuals the seroprevalence of anti-HEV IgM was 0.5% (slaughter workers 0.5%, residual products handlers 0.7%). The response rate of HEV-antigen as measured by RT-PCR was 0.2%. Risk factors significantly related to anti-HEV IgG seropositivity were age, sex , and working duration (slaughter workers only).
There were significant risk factors (sex, age, and working duration) for HEV identified in our study. All three positive cases for HEV-antigen by RT-PCR were related to pig slaughter but without statistical significance. To prevent HEV, an educational program and working guidelines may be needed for high risk groups.


Citations to this article as recorded by  
  • Epidemiological Aspects of Hepatitis E Virus Infections between South Korea and Japan
    Myeong-Jin Lee, Won-Chang Lee, Young Hwan Kwon
    The Korean Journal of Aerospace and Environmental Medicine.2022; 32(1): 27.     CrossRef
  • Hepatitis E virus in professionally exposed: A reason for concern?
    Anna Mrzljak, Ivan Balen, Ljubo Barbic, Maja Ilic, Tatjana Vilibic-Cavlek
    World Journal of Hepatology.2021; 13(7): 723.     CrossRef

JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health