Hepatitis D virus (HDV) causes the most severe form of viral hepatitis, which may rapidly progress to liver cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). It has been estimated that 15–20 million people worldwide are suffering from the chronic HDV infection. Currently, no effective therapies are available to treat acute or chronic HDV infection. The remarkable sequence variability of the HDV genome, particularly within the hypervariable region has resulted in the provisional classification of eight major genotypes and various subtypes. We have developed a specialized database, HDVdb, which contains a collection of partial and complete HDV genomic sequences obtained from the GenBank and from our own patient cohort. HDVdb enables the researchers to investigate the genetic variability of all available HDV sequences, correlation of genotypes to epidemiology and pathogenesis. Additionally, it will contribute in understanding the drug resistant mutations and develop effective vaccines against HDV infection. The database can be accessed through a web interface that allows for static and dynamic queries and offers integrated generic and specialized sequence analysis tools, such as annotation, genotyping, primer prediction, and phylogenetic analyses.
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