HCV genotype and subtype

There are at least seven different types of HCV, known as genotypes.

Genotypes are numbered from G1 to G7, in the order that they were discovered.

These genotypes also have variations, called subtypes, which are named by lower-case letter (i.e. a, b, c, etc), also in the order that they were discovered.

Each genotype and subtype is a distinct virus. You can be infected and reinfected by more than one genotype or subtype.

You can also be reinfected with the same or a different genotype after successfully clearing or being cured of HCV.

In the UK, everyone with coinfection should have an HCV genotype test. Although some DAAs work for all genotypes, knowing your genotype is still important.

Table 2: Predominant hepatitis C genotype by region

Region Main HCV genotype
UK 1 and 3
Asia 1, 2 and 3
Egypt, the Middle East, Central and West Africa 1, 2 and 4
Mainland Europe, North America, Japan 1a and 1b. G2 and 3 are less common, G4 is increasing.
South Africa 2 and 5
South East Asia 1, 3, 6 and 7

Last updated: 17 August 2017.