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Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz

Print version ISSN 0074-0276On-line version ISSN 1678-8060


EYER-SILVA, Walter A  and  MORGADO, Mariza G. Autochthonous horizontal transmission of a CRF02_AG strain revealed by a human immunodeficiency virus type 1 diversity survey in a small city in inner state of Rio de Janeiro, Southeast Brazil. Mem. Inst. Oswaldo Cruz [online]. 2007, vol.102, n.7, pp.809-815.  Epub Oct 30, 2007. ISSN 0074-0276.

As part of an ongoing study on the features of AIDS spread towards small cities and rural areas, we present a molecular survey of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) polymerase sequences recovered between 2004 and 2006 from 71 patients receiving care in the city of Saquarema, inner state of Rio de Janeiro. Phylogenetic reconstructions found the two prevalent lineages in the state (subtypes B [59 strains, 83.1%], F1 [6 strains; 8.4%], and BF1 recombinants [four strains; 5.6%]), as well as two (2.8%) CRF02_AG strains, which seems to be an emerging lineage in the capital. These CRF02_AG sequences were recovered from a married heterosexual couple who never traveled abroad, thus providing the first molecular evidence of autochthonous horizontal transmission of this lineage of major global importance. Also, three phylogenetic clusters of strains recovered from a total of 18.3% of the cohort were uncovered. Their close genetic relatedness suggests they were recovered from patients who probably took part in the same chain of viral spread. In conjunction with our previous surveys from inner Rio de Janeiro, these results suggest that although small cities harbor unique molecular features of HIV-1 infection, they also clearly reflect and may rapidly absorb the diversity recorded in large urban centers.

Keywords : Brazil; CRF02_AG; human immunodeficiency virus type 1; molecular epidemiology; transmission clusters.

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