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Prevalence and Incidence of Viral Infections among Musculoskeletal Tissue Donors and First-Time Blood Donors

Felix Yao, MBBS; Clive Seed, BSc; David Wood, MBBS, MS; and Ming-Hao Zheng, PhD, DM
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From University of Western Australia, Perth WA 6009, Australia.

Acknowledgment: The authors thank David Morgan, Morris Benkovich, and Ron Simard from the Queensland Bone Bank; Kellie Hamilton and Vicky Winship from the Donor Tissue Bank of Victoria; and Anne Cowie and Joyleen Winter from the Perth Bone and Tissue Bank for helping with data procurement and analysis.

Grant Support: By a grant from the Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital Research Foundation awarded to Drs. Zheng and Yao.

Potential Financial Conflicts of Interest: None disclosed.

Ann Intern Med. 2008;148(10):792-794. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-148-10-200805200-00017
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Posted on July 6, 2010
Dr. Bidyut Kumar Das
Conflict of Interest: None Declared

It is a common believe that seroprevalence of HBV, HCV, HIV and HTLV in blood donors is closely related to the incidence of transmission of blood borne viruses to musculoskeletal organ transplant recipient. But studies in different countries (1,2,3,4,) showed estimated incidence of viral infection in tissue donors are higher than first time blood donors. The incidence rates among musculoskeletal donors were estimated to be 15.81, 0.68, 3.53, and 4.85 per 100,000 person-years by comparing the data with age-specific incidence rates of first-time blood donors. In our study, we screened 3745 healthy first-time blood donors for HBV, HCV, and HIV and seroprevalence was 1.55%, 0.35% and 0.32% respectively which is pretty high and estimated incidence in tissue donors could be much higher. Hence musculoskeletal tissue transplant posses significant threat of transmitting blood borne viruses to the recipients especially in this part of the globe unless careful donor selection and stringent viral screening are performed.


1. Yao F; Seed C; Wood D, and Zheng MH. Prevalence and Incidence of Viral Infections among Musculoskeletal Tissue Donors and First-Time Blood Donors. May 20, 2008vol. 148 no. 10 792-794.

2.Zou S, Dodd RY, Stramer SL, Strong DM. Tissue Safety Study Group. Probability of viremia with HBV, HCV, HIV, and HTLV among tissue donors in the United States. N Engl J Med. 2004;351:751-9. [PMID: 15317888]

3.Zahariadis G, Plitt SS, O'Brien S, Yi QL, Fan W, Preiksaitis JK. Prevalence and estimated incidence of blood-borne viral pathogen infection in organ and tissue donors from northern Alberta. Am J Transplant. 2007;7:226-34. [PMID: 17109730]

4.Galea G, Dow BC. Comparison of prevalence rates of microbiological markers between bone/tissue donations and new blood donors in Scotland. Vox Sang. 2006;91:28-33. [PMID: 16756598]

5. F. Yao; M. Zheng; A. Farrugia; C. Seed; M. Benkovich; L. Ireland; V. Winship; J. Winter; and D. Wood. RISK OF HIV, HBV, HCV, AND HTLV INFECTION AMONG MUSCULOSKELETAL TISSUE DONORS IN AUSTRALIA. Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery - British Volume, Vol 91-B, Issue SUPP_I, 77..

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