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TT virus (TTV) is widely distributed, with high frequencies of viremia in South America, Central Africa, and Papua New Guinea. The incidence and timing of infection in children born in a rural area of the Democratic Republic of Congo was investigated. TTV viremia was detected in 61 (58%) of 105 women attending an antenatal clinic and in 36 (54%) of 68 infants. Most infants acquired the infection at >/=3 months postpartum. Surprisingly, TTV infection was detected in a large proportion of children with TTV-negative mothers (13 [43%] of 30). Nucleotide sequences of TTV-infected children were frequently epidemiologically unlinked to variants detected in the mother. These three aspects contrast with the maternal transmission of hepatitis G virus/GB virus C in this cohort and suggest an environmental source of TTV infection comparable to hepatitis A virus and other enterically transmitted infections.

Original publication




Journal article


J Infect Dis

Publication Date





1070 - 1076


DNA Virus Infections, DNA Viruses, DNA, Viral, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Endemic Diseases, Female, Flaviviridae, HIV Infections, Hepatitis Viruses, Hepatitis, Viral, Human, Humans, Infant, Infant, Newborn, Infectious Disease Transmission, Vertical, Liver Diseases, Molecular Sequence Data, Phylogeny, Polymerase Chain Reaction, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Complications, Infectious, RNA, Viral, Rural Population, Sequence Analysis, DNA