Serum samples obtained from 289 first-time and 114 repeat donors at the Blood Center of Mongolia (MBC) were tested for serological and molecular markers of hepatitis B virus (HBV), hepatitis C virus (HCV), and hepatitis delta virus (HDV) infections. Among the 403 blood donors, 33 (8.2%), 21 (5.2%), and 27 (6.7%) tested positive for hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) and/or HBV DNA, HCV RNA, and HDV RNA, respectively. Collectively, 55 donors were viremic for one or more of these viruses, and included 54 first-time donors (18.7%) and 1 repeat donor (0.9%) (P < 0.0001). One discrepant case with HBsAg detectable only at MBC was negative for HBsAg, HBV DNA and anti-HBc in this study. Four donors who were HCV-viremic in this study were negative for anti-HCV by the MBC method. Further efforts to increase the sensitivity and specificity of the currently-used tests are urgently required in Mongolia. Three donors who were positive for anti-HBc and anti-HDV but negative for HBsAg, had both HBV DNA and HDV RNA. This suggests that introduction of a new anti-HDV serological test is useful for not only HDV screening but also HBV screening of anti-HBc-positive, HBsAg negative donors, considering a possibility of viral interference by coexisting HDV.
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