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New test: Hepatitis B virus e antigen (HBeA) and antibodies (anti-HBe)
The Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine will switch our current manual HBe and anti-HBe enzyme immunoassay kits to the fully automated LIAISON XL assay. These results in conjunction with other laboratory results and clinical information may be used as an aid in the diagnosis of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection in patients with symptoms of hepatitis or who may be at risk for hepatitis infection.

HBeAg can be detected in the bloodstream of persons with acute or chronic HBV infection. Anti-HBe is detectable in late stage of acute HBV infection and in carriers of HBV who are able to clear HBeAg from circulation. Presence of HBeAg correlates with viral replication, high viral levels of HBV DNA, and high infectivity. Anti-HBe usually correlates with very minimal or no HBV replication and low infectivity.

Effective date: April 26, 2021

Methodology and reporting:
LIAISON® XL is a fully automated chemiluminescence analyzer for the qualitative detection HBeAg and total HBe antibodies (anti-HBe) in adult and pediatric (2 to 21 years) serum and plasma.

Interpretation of results:

Hepatitis Be Antigen
  • Nonreactive: index value >= 0.8
  • Reactive: index value < 0.8
Hepatitis Be Antibody
  • Nonreactive: index value <= 0.69
  • Equivocal: repeatedly index value of 0.7 – 0.9
  • Reactive: index value >= 0.9
Specimen requirements:
Collect: 4.0 mL blood in gold-top or red-top
Preparation: spin down and separate serum
Specimen required: 2.0 mL serum
Minimum volume: 1.0 mL serum

Test codes: HBEAG and HBEAB

Stability (after separation from cells):
HBEAG: Ambient: 24 hours; Refrigerated: 7 days; Frozen: 3 months
HBEAB: Ambient: 4 days; Refrigerated: 7 days; Frozen: 3 months

Turnaround time (TAT):
STAT: Not available
Routine: 1-5 days
Test set up frequency: twice a week

Rejection criteria:
Specimens that exceed stated stability, unlabeled/mislabeled/mismatched specimens, specimens submitted in leaking containers, heat inactivated, grossly lipemic, hemolyzed and contaminated specimens.

References ›

A summary of all tests offered by our laboratory services can be found here:


Cassiana Bittencourt, MD
Division of Clinical Microbiology

Edwin S. Monuki, MD, PhD
Department of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine

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