Hepatitis E

Paul G. Auwaerter, M.D., Juhi Moon, M.D.


  • An RNA virus is transmitted via enteric routes in epidemics and sporadic cases, similar to HAV.
    • Modes of transmission include waterborne, zoonotic/foodborne and, less commonly, through blood transfusion and perinatally.
  • Eight genotypes described, with four causing human illness and distinct transmission means suspected.
    • Genotypes 1, 2: predominantly fecal-contaminated water in developing countries worldwide.
    • Genotypes 3, 4: Zoonotic transmission appears more foodborne (insufficiently cooked game meat or pork products and shellfish in North America, Western Europe, and Japan).

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Last updated: January 13, 2023