Predominance of HIV type 1 subtype G among commercial sex workers from Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo

C. Yang, B. Dash, S. L. Hanna, H. S. Frances, N. Nzilambi, R. C. Colebunders, M. St. Louis, T. C. Quinn, T. M. Folks, R. B. Lal

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29 Scopus citations


We have investigated the genetic diversity and potential mosaic genomes of HIV-1 during the early part of the HIV-1 epidemic among commercial sex workers (CSWs) in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire). Serologic analysis revealed that 27 (28.7%) of the 94 specimens were seropositive by both peptide and whole-virus lysate EIAs and that 24 were positive by molecular screening assays, using generic primers that can detect all known groups of HIV-1. Phylogenetic analyses of the gagp24, C2V3, and gp41 regions of these 24 specimens showed that all were group M; none of them had any evidence of group O, N, or SIVcpz-like sequences. On the basis of env sequence analysis, the 24 group M specimens were classified as subtypes G (37.5%), A (21%), F1 (12.5%), CRF01_AE (8%), D (4%), and H (4%); 3 (12.5%) were unclassifiable (U). Similar analysis of the gagp24 region revealed that the majority of infections were subtype A; however, onethird of the specimens were subtype G. Parallel analysis of gagp24 and env regions revealed discordant sub-types in many specimens that may reflect possible dual and/or recombinant viruses. These data suggest a predominance of subtype G (both pure G and recombinant CRF02_AG) during the early part of the epidemic in Kinshasa. Infections with group N or SIVcpz-like viruses were not present among these CSWs in Kinshasa.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-365
Number of pages5
JournalAIDS research and human retroviruses
Issue number4
StatePublished - Mar 1 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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