Unité Bases Moléculaires et Structurales des Systèmes Infectieux; UMR 5086 CNRS - Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1; IBCP FR 3302 - 7, passage du Vercors, 69367 Lyon CEDEX 07, INSERM, U1052, Viral Hepatitis Research Laboratory; Université Lyon 1, 151, cours Albert Thomas, 69003 Lyon, and Hospices Civils de Lyon, Hepatology Department, 69004 Lyon, France.
We have developed a specialized database, HBVdb (http://hbvdb.ibcp.fr), allowing the researchers to investigate the genetic variability of Hepatitis B Virus (HBV) and viral resistance to treatment. HBV is a major health problem worldwide with more than 350 million individuals being chronically infected. HBV is an enveloped DNA virus that replicates by reverse transcription of an RNA intermediate. HBV genome is optimized, being circular and encoding four overlapping reading frames. Indeed, each nucleotide of the genome takes part in the coding of at least one protein. However, HBV shows some genome variability leading to at least eight different genotypes and recombinant forms. The main drugs used to treat infected patients are nucleos(t)ides analogs (reverse transcriptase inhibitors). Unfortunately, HBV mutants resistant to these drugs may be selected and be responsible for treatment failure. HBVdb contains a collection of computer-annotated sequences based on manually annotated reference genomes. The database can be accessed through a web interface that allows static and dynamic queries and offers integrated generic sequence analysis tools and specialized analysis tools (e.g. annotation, genotyping, drug resistance profiling).