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HIV-1 Protease and reverse-transcriptase mutations: correlations with antiretroviral therapy in subtype B isolates and implications for drug-resistance surveillance

Background. It is important, for drug-resistance surveillance, to identify human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) strains that have undergone antiretroviral drug selection.Methods. We compared the prevalence of protease and reverse-transcriptase (RT) mutations in HIV-1 sequences from persons with and without previous treatment with protease inhibitors (PIs), nucleoside RT inhibitors (NRTIs), and nonnucleoside RT inhibitors (NNRTIs). Treatment-associated mutations in protease isolates from 5867 persons and RT isolates from 6247 persons were categorized by whether they were polymorphic (prevalence, 0.5%) in untreated individuals and whether they were established drug-resistance mutations. New methods were introduced to minimize misclassification from transmitted resistance, population stratification, sequencing artifacts, and multiple hypothesis testing.Results. Some 36 established and 24 additional nonpolymorphic protease mutations at 34 positions were related to PI treatment, 21 established and 22 additional nonpolymorphic RT mutations at 24 positions with NRTI treatment, and 15 established and 11 additional nonpolymorphic RT mutations at 15 positions with NNRTI treatment. In addition, 11 PI-associated and 1 NRTI-associated established mutations were polymorphic in viruses from untreated persons.Conclusions. Established drug-resistance mutations encompass only a subset of treatment-associated mutations; some of these are polymorphic in untreated persons. In contrast, nonpolymorphic treatment-associated mutations may be more sensitive and specific markers of transmitted HIV-1 drug resistance.

Authors: Rhee SY; Fessel WJ; Zolopa AR; Hurley L; Liu T; Taylor J; Nguyen DP; Slome S; Klein D; Horberg M; Flamm J; Follansbee S; Schapiro JM; Shafer RW

J Infect Dis. 2005 Aug 1;192(3):456-65. Epub 2005 Jul 5.

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