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Title: Human T-cell leukaemia virus type 1 and Adult T-cell leukaemia/lymphoma in Queensland, Australia: a retrospective cross-sectional study
Authors: Martin, Fabiola
Gilks, Charles F
Gibb, Robert
Jenkins, Alana
Protani, Melinda
Francis, Fleur
Redmond, Andrew M
Neilsen, Graham
Mudge, David 
Wolley, Martin 
Binotto, Enzo 
Norton, Robert 
Nimmo, Graeme R 
Heney, Claire 
Issue Date: 2022
Publisher: BMJ Journals
Source: Martin F, Gilks CF, Gibb R, et alHuman T-cell leukaemia virus type 1 and Adult T-cell leukaemia/lymphoma in Queensland, Australia: a retrospective cross-sectional studySexually Transmitted Infections Published Online First: 06 May 2022. doi: 10.1136/sextrans-2021-055241
Journal: Sexually transmitted infections
Abstract: Human T-cell leukaemia virus type 1 (HTLV-1), an STI, is reported to be highly prevalent in Indigenous communities in Central Australia. HTLV-1 is an incurable, chronic infection which can cause Adult T-cell leukaemia/lymphoma (ATL). ATL is associated with high morbidity and mortality, with limited treatment options. We studied the prevalence of HTLV-1 and ATL in the state of Queensland, Australia. Serum samples stored at healthcare services in Brisbane, Townsville and Cairns and at haemodialysis units in Brisbane (2018-2019) were screened for HTLV-1/2 antibodies using the Abbott ARCHITECT chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay (CMIA) for antibodies against gp46-I, gp46-II and GD21 (Abbott CMIA, ARCHITECT). Reactive samples were confirmed through Western blot. Pooled Australian National Cancer Registry surveillance data reporting on cases coded for ATL (2004-2015) were analysed. Two out of 2000 hospital and health services samples were confirmed HTLV-1-positive (0.1%, 95% CI 0.02% to 0.4%), both in older women, one Indigenous and one non-Indigenous. All 540 haemodialysis samples tested negative for HTLV. All samples were HTLV-2-negative. Ten out of 42 (24.8%) reported cases of ATL in Australia were from Queensland (crude incidence rate 0.025/100 000; 95% CI 0.011 to 0.045); most cases were seen in adult men of non-Indigenous origin. Nineteen deaths due to ATL were recorded in Australia. We confirm that HTLV-1 and ATL were detected in Queensland in Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. These results highlight the need for HTLV-1 prevalence studies in populations at risk of STIs to allow the implementation of focused public health sexual and mother-to-child transmission prevention strategies.
Description: Cairns & Hinterland Hospital and Health Service (CHHHS) affiliated author: Enzo Binotto
DOI: 10.1136/sextrans-2021-055241
Type: Article
Appears in Sites:Cairns & Hinterland HHS Publications

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