Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG) and Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) are common sexually transmitted infections (STI). We assessed the cumulative risk of NG and CT in a cohort of HIV-1-infected high-risk women taking antiretrovirals over 4 years in Burkina Faso.
Between March 2007 and February 2011, participants were followed every 3–6 months. At each visit, participants underwent a gynaecological examination with collection of cervical and vaginal swabs. Random-effects logistic regression models were used to analyse associations of NG and CT infection with behavioural and biological factors.
172 women had samples tested for NG and CT during the study period, in a total of 1135 visits. NG was detected in 6.4% of women (11/172, 95% CI 2.7 to 10.1) at a rate of 2.76 cases (95% CI 1.53 to 4.99) per 100 person-years. CT was detected in 1.7% (3/172, 95% CI 0 to 3.7) of women at a rate of 0.75 cases (95% CI 0.24 to 2.34) per 100 person-years. The majority of women were asymptomatic (9/14). In the multivariable model, the presence of NG or CT was associated with tobacco use (aOR=11.85, 95% CI 1.13 to 124.17), and concurrent genital HIV-1 RNA shedding (aOR=4.78, 95% CI 1.17 to 19.46). Higher levels of education (aOR=0.17, 95% CI 0.03 to 0.92), and age greater than 35 years (aOR=0.07, 95% CI 0.01 to 0.92) were associated with lower odds of infection.
The risk of NG or CT infection remains low among high-risk women in Bobo-Dioulasso. This provides some evidence that antiretroviral use does not contribute to behavioural disinhibition. The asymptomatic nature of most infections underscores the need for regular screening and treatment of STIs in core groups.
Africa; Anteretroviral Therapy; Chlamydia Infection; Gonorrhoea; HIV
The species Alphapapillomavirus 7 (alpha-7) contains human papillomavirus genotypes that account for 15% of invasive cervical cancers and are disproportionately associated with adenocarcinoma of the cervix. Complete genome analyses enable identification and nomenclature of variant lineages and sublineages.
The URR/E6 region was sequenced to screen for novel variants of HPV18, 39, 45, 59, 68, 70, 85 and 97 from 1147 cervical samples obtained from multiple geographic regions that had previously been shown to contain an alpha-7 HPV isolate. To study viral heterogeneity, the complete 8 kb genome of 128 isolates, including 109 sequenced for this analysis, were annotated and analyzed. Viral evolution was characterized by constructing phylogenic trees using maximum-likelihood and Bayesian algorithms. Global and pairwise alignments were used to calculate total and ORF/region nucleotide differences; lineages and sublineages were assigned using an alphanumeric system. The prototype genome was assigned to the A lineage or A1 sublineage.
The genomic diversity of alpha-7 HPV types ranged from 1.1% to 6.7% nucleotide sequence differences; the extent of genome-genome pairwise intratype heterogeneity was 1.1% for HPV39, 1.3% for HPV59, 1.5% for HPV45, 1.6% for HPV70, 2.1% for HPV18, and 6.7% for HPV68. ME180 (previously a subtype of HPV68) was designated as the representative genome for HPV68 sublineage C1. Each ORF/region differed in sequence diversity, from most variable to least variable: noncoding region 1 (NCR1) / noncoding region 2 (NCR2) > upstream regulatory region (URR) > E6 / E7 > E2 / L2 > E1 / L1.
These data provide estimates of the maximum viral genomic heterogeneity of alpha-7 HPV type variants. The proposed taxonomic system facilitates the comparison of variants across epidemiological and molecular studies. Sequence diversity, geographic distribution and phylogenetic topology of this clinically important group of HPVs suggest an independent evolutionary history for each type.
The human skin is a complex ecosystem that hosts a heterogeneous flora. Until recently, the diversity of the cutaneous microbiota was mainly investigated for bacteria through culture based assays subsequently confirmed by molecular techniques. There are now many evidences that viruses represent a significant part of the cutaneous flora as demonstrated by the asymptomatic carriage of beta and gamma-human papillomaviruses on the healthy skin. Furthermore, it has been recently suggested that some representatives of the Polyomavirus genus might share a similar feature. In the present study, the cutaneous virome of the surface of the normal-appearing skin from five healthy individuals and one patient with Merkel cell carcinoma was investigated through a high throughput metagenomic sequencing approach in an attempt to provide a thorough description of the cutaneous flora, with a particular focus on its viral component. The results emphasize the high diversity of the viral cutaneous flora with multiple polyomaviruses, papillomaviruses and circoviruses being detected on normal-appearing skin. Moreover, this approach resulted in the identification of new Papillomavirus and Circovirus genomes and confirmed a very low level of genetic diversity within human polyomavirus species. Although viruses are generally considered as pathogen agents, our findings support the existence of a complex viral flora present at the surface of healthy-appearing human skin in various individuals. The dynamics and anatomical variations of this skin virome and its variations according to pathological conditions remain to be further studied. The potential involvement of these viruses, alone or in combination, in skin proliferative disorders and oncogenesis is another crucial issue to be elucidated.
Human papillomavirus 16 (HPV16) species group (alpha-9) of the Alphapapillomavirus genus contains HPV16, HPV31, HPV33, HPV35, HPV52, HPV58 and HPV67. These HPVs account for 75% of invasive cervical cancers worldwide. Viral variants of these HPVs differ in evolutionary history and pathogenicity. Moreover, a comprehensive nomenclature system for HPV variants is lacking, limiting comparisons between studies.
DNA from cervical samples previously characterized for HPV type were obtained from multiple geographic regions to screen for novel variants. The complete 8 kb genomes of 120 variants representing the major and minor lineages of the HPV16-related alpha-9 HPV types were sequenced to capture maximum viral heterogeneity. Viral evolution was characterized by constructing phylogenic trees based on complete genomes using multiple algorithms. Maximal and viral region specific divergence was calculated by global and pairwise alignments. Variant lineages were classified and named using an alphanumeric system; the prototype genome was assigned to the A lineage for all types.
The range of genome-genome sequence heterogeneity varied from 0.6% for HPV35 to 2.2% for HPV52 and included 1.4% for HPV31, 1.1% for HPV33, 1.7% for HPV58 and 1.1% for HPV67. Nucleotide differences of approximately 1.0% - 10.0% and 0.5%–1.0% of the complete genomes were used to define variant lineages and sublineages, respectively. Each gene/region differs in sequence diversity, from most variable to least variable: noncoding region 1 (NCR1) /noncoding region 2 (NCR2) >upstream regulatory region (URR)> E6/E7 > E2/L2 > E1/L1.
These data define maximum viral genomic heterogeneity of HPV16-related alpha-9 HPV variants. The proposed nomenclature system facilitates the comparison of variants across epidemiological studies. Sequence diversity and phylogenies of this clinically important group of HPVs provides the basis for further studies of discrete viral evolution, epidemiology, pathogenesis and preventative/therapeutic interventions.
Human papillomaviruses are the most common sexually transmitted infections, and genital warts, caused by HPV-6 and 11, entail considerable morbidity and cost. The natural history of genital warts in relation to HIV-1 infection has not been described in African women. We examined risk factors for genital warts in a cohort of high-risk women in Burkina Faso, in order to further describe their epidemiology.
A prospective study of 765 high-risk women who were followed at 4-monthly intervals for 27 months in Burkina Faso. Logistic and Cox regression were used to identify factors associated with prevalent, incident and persistent genital warts, including HIV-1 serostatus, CD4+ count, and concurrent sexually transmitted infections. In a subset of 306 women, cervical HPV DNA was tested at enrolment.
Genital wart prevalence at baseline was 1.6% (8/492) among HIV-uninfected and 7.0% (19/273) among HIV-1 seropositive women. Forty women (5.2%) experienced at least one incident GW episode. Incidence was 1.1 per 100 person-years among HIV-uninfected women, 7.4 per 100 person-years among HIV-1 seropositive women with a nadir CD4+ count >200 cells/μL and 14.6 per 100 person-years among HIV-1 seropositive women with a nadir CD4+ count ≤200 cells/μL. Incident genital warts were also associated with concurrent bacterial vaginosis, and genital ulceration. Antiretroviral therapy was not protective against incident or persistent genital warts. Detection of HPV-6 DNA and abnormal cervical cytology were strongly associated with incident genital warts.
Genital warts occur much more frequently among HIV-1 infected women in Africa, particularly among those with low CD4+ counts. Antiretroviral therapy did not reduce the incidence or persistence of genital warts in this population.
Retroviruses have been linked to a variety of diseases such as neoplastic and immunodeficiency disorders and neurologic and respiratory diseases. Recently, a novel infectious human retrovirus, the xenotropic murine leukemia virus-related virus (XMRV), has been identified in cohorts of patients with either a familial type of prostate cancer or chronic fatigue syndrome. The apparent unrelatedness of these diseases raised the question of the potential involvement of XMRV in other diseases.
Here, we investigated the presence of XMRV in a selection of pediatric idiopathic infectious diseases with symptoms that are suggestive of a retroviral infection, as well as in children with respiratory diseases and in adult patients with spondyloarthritis (SpA). Using a XMRV env-nested PCR, we screened 72 DNA samples obtained from 62 children hospitalized in the Montpellier university hospital (France) for hematological, neurological or inflammatory pathologies, 80 DNA samples from nasopharyngeal aspirates from children with respiratory diseases and 19 DNA samples from SpA. None of the samples tested was positive for XMRV or MLV-like env sequences, indicating that XMRV is not involved in these pathologies.
The diversity of the V3 loop tip motif sequences of HIV-1 subtype B was analyzed in patients from Botucatu (Brazil) and Montpellier (France). Overall, 37 tetrameric tip motifs were identified, 28 and 17 of them being recognized in Brazilian and French patients, respectively. The GPGR (P) motif was predominant in French but not in Brazilian patients (53.5% vs 31.0%), whereas the GWGR (W) motif was frequent in Brazilian patients (23.0%) and absent in French patients. Three tip motif groups were considered: P, W, and non-P non-W groups. The distribution of HIV-1 isolates into the three groups was significantly different between isolates from Botucatu and from Montpellier (P < 0.001). A higher proportion of CXCR4-using HIV-1 (X4 variants) was observed in the non-P non-W group as compared with the P group (37.5% vs 19.1%), and no X4 variant was identified in the W group (P < 0.001). The higher proportion of X4 variants in the non-P non-W group was essentially observed among the patients from Montpellier, who have been infected with HIV-1 for a longer period of time than those from Botucatu. Among patients from Montpellier, CD4+ cell counts were lower in patients belonging to the non-P non-W group than in those belonging to the P group (24 cells/μL vs 197 cells/μL; P = 0.005). Taken together, the results suggest that variability of the V3 loop tip motif may be related to HIV-1 coreceptor usage and to disease progression. However, as analyzed by a bioinformatic method, the substitution of the V3 loop tip motif of the subtype B consensus sequence with the different tip motifs identified in the present study was not sufficient to induce a change in HIV-1 coreceptor usage.
HIV-1; V3 loop; Genetic diversity; Brazil; France
To assess the usefulness of using cutaneous swabs to detect Merkel cell polyomavirus (MCPyV) DNA, we analyzed swabs from persons with Merkel cell carcinoma (MCC), others with skin diseases, and healthy volunteers. MCPyV was detected in at least 1 sample from virtually all participants. Viral loads were higher in samples from patients with MCC.
Merkel cell carcinoma; Merkel cell polyomavirus; MCPyV; tumors; skin diseases; viruses; dispatch
The development and validation of dried sample spots as a method of specimen collection are urgently needed in developing countries for monitoring of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Our aim was to test some crucial steps in the use of dried spots, i.e., viral recovery and storage over time. Moreover, we investigated whether dried plasma and blood spots (DPS and DBS, respectively) give comparable viral load (VL) results. Four manual RNA extraction methods from commercial HIV type 1 (HIV-1) VL assays—a QIAamp minikit (Qiagen), the Abbott Molecular sample preparation system, the Nuclisens assay (bioMarieux), and High Pure viral nucleic acid kit (Roche Applied Science)—were compared for VL quantification and PCR amplification for genotypic drug resistance testing on dried spots from spiked plasma and residual samples from HIV-1 patients (n = 47; median VL, 4.13 log10 copies/ml). RNA recovery from DPS was efficient using Nuclisens extraction (median difference, 0.03 log10 copies/ml) and slightly underestimated using the Abbott Molecular sample preparation system (median difference, 0.35 log10 copies/ml). PCR amplification results were in concordance. Measurements from DBS overestimated VL for plasma, with VL results showing <3.7 log10 copies/ml. VL was stable for up to 3 months in spiked DPS stored at 20°C but for only 1 month at 37°C. A faster decline was observed in PCR efficiency: DPS could be stored for 1 week at 37°C and for 1 month at 20°C. In conclusion, the RNA extraction method is an important factor in obtaining reliable RNA quantification and PCR amplification of HIV-1 on DPS/DBS. DBS could be used as an alternative for DPS depending on HIV RNA cutoffs for virological failure. VL measurements remain stable over a longer period than do PCR amplification results.
Merkel cell carcinoma; Polyomavirus; MCPyV; letter
KI and WU Polyomaviruses in Children, France
KI human polyomavirus; WU human polyomavirus; respiratory tract disease; children; France; letter
The newly identified human bocavirus is frequently detected by molecular techniques in respiratory samples from children with respiratory tract infections, but virions have not been observed so far. We report the electron microscopy observation of viral particles in nasopharyngeal aspirates previously found to be positive for human bocavirus DNA. The virions presented the expected structural characteristics of a Parvoviridae family member.
The presence of HIV-1 preintegration reservoir was assessed in an in vitro experimental model of latent HIV-1 infection, and in patients treated or not with highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART).
In resting CD4+ T lymphocytes latently infected in vitro with HIV-1, we demonstrated that the polyclonal activation induced a HIV-1 replication, which could be prevented by the use of an HIV-1 integrase inhibitor. We also showed that this reservoir was labile since the rescuable HIV-1-antigens production from unintegrated HIV-1 genomes declined over time. These data confirm that our experimental approach allows the characterization of a functional unintegrated HIV-1 reservoir. We then explored the preintegration reservoir in HIV-1-infected patients. This reservoir was detected in 11 of 12 untreated patients, in 4 of 10 sustained responders to HAART, and in one incomplete responder. This reservoir was also inducible, labile, and anti-HIV-1 integrase drug inhibited its induction. Finally, this reservoir was associated with the presence of spontaneous HIV-1 antigens producing CD4+ T cells in blood from 3 of 3 untreated patients and 2 of 2 sustained responders to HAART harboring a preintegration reservoir.
This preintegration phase of HIV-1 latency could be a consequence of the ongoing viral replication in untreated patients and of a residual viral replication in treated patients.
The LCx human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) RNA Quantitative, RealTime HIV, and COBAS AmpliPrep-COBAS TaqMan assays for HIV type 1 (HIV-1) were compared for their abilities to quantitate HIV-1 RNA in plasma. High degrees of correlation and agreement were observed between the assays. Differences in HIV-1 RNA levels according to HIV-1 subtypes did not reach statistical significance.
Human bocavirus (HBoV), a new member of the genus Bocavirus in the family Parvoviridae, has been recently associated with respiratory tract infections. We report the epidemiologic and clinical features observed from a 1-year retrospective study of HBoV infection in young children hospitalized with a respiratory tract infection.
human bocavirus; respiratory tract disease; children
Bocavirus; children; respiratory tract disease; letter
The genotypic inhibitory quotient (GIQ) has been proposed as a way to integrate drug exposure and genotypic resistance to protease inhibitors and can be useful to enhance the predictivity of virologic response for boosted protease inhibitors. The aim of this study was to evaluate the predictivity of the GIQ in 116 protease inhibitor-experienced patients treated with lopinavir-ritonavir. The overall decrease in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) RNA from baseline to month 6 was a median of −1.50 log10 copies/ml and 40% of patients had plasma HIV-1 RNA below 400 copies/ml at month 6. The overall median lopinavir study-state Cmin concentration was 5,856 ng/ml. Using univariate linear regression analyses, both lopinavir GIQ and the number of baseline lopinavir mutations were highly associated with virologic response through 6 months. In the multivariate analysis, only lopinavir GIQ, baseline HIV RNA, and the number of prior protease inhibitors were significantly associated with response. When the analysis was limited to patients with more highly mutant viruses (three or more lopinavir mutations), only lopinavir GIQ remained significantly associated with virologic response. This study suggests that GIQ could be a better predictor of the virologic response than virological (genotype) or pharmacological (minimal plasma concentration) approaches used separately, especially among patients with at least three protease inhibitor resistance mutations. Therapeutic drug monitoring for patients treated by lopinavir-ritonavir would likely be most useful in patients with substantially resistant viruses.
We compared the QUANTIPLEX HIV-1 RNA 2.0 assay with the AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR 1.0 assay for quantitation of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) RNA in plasma in the Stadi trail, which evaluated a stavudine plus didanosine combination therapy in 52 patients. HIV-1 RNA baseline values measured with AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR 1.0 were significantly higher than those measured with QUANTIPLEX HIV-1 RNA 2.0, and decreases in HIV-1 RNA levels from baseline were also found to be significantly higher when measured with the AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR 1.0 assay. The frequency of HIV-1 RNA levels below the lower limit of quantitation was significantly higher with QUANTIPLEX HIV-1 RNA 2.0 than with AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR 1.0. Reanalysis of these results by an ultrasensitive procedure of AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR 1.0 or by a modified version of the test that included additional primers adapted for non-B HIV-1 clades yielded greater differences between the QUANTIPLEX HIV-1 RNA 2.0 assay and the AMPLICOR HIV-1 MONITOR 1.0 assay. Our results indicate that a valid comparison of the virological efficacies obtained with different antiretroviral drug regimens requires the use of the same viral load quantitation procedure; further standardization between the different HIV-1 RNA quantitation kits is therefore needed.
Nuclisens HIV-1 QT is a new version of the NASBA HIV-1 QT assay for quantitation of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) RNA in plasma. The specificity of this assay was 100% in one laboratory and 99%—with nonrepeatability of the initial false positive—in another. The test was linear between 2.0 and 6.0 log RNA copies per ml. According to the input HIV-1 RNA concentration, accuracy varied from −0.11 to +0.10 log RNA copy per ml and precision varied from 0.66 to 0.14 log RNA copy per ml. Reproducibility decreased when the HIV-1 RNA level was near the lower limit of quantitation of the test. HIV-1 RNA could be quantitated by Nuclisens HIV-1 QT in 36% (laboratory 1) and 24% (laboratory 2) of clinical samples with HIV-1 RNA levels lower than the lower limit of quantitation by NASBA HIV-1 QT. Nuclisens HIV-1 QT was not suitable for measurement of RNA from clade G and group O HIV-1 strains.
Antiretroviral therapy (ART) reduces transmission of HIV-1. However, genital HIV-1 can be detected in patients on ART. We analyzed factors associated with genital HIV-1 shedding among high-risk women on ART in Burkina Faso.
Plasma viral load (PVL) and enriched cervicovaginal lavage HIV-1 RNA were measured every 3–6 months for up to 8 years. Random-effects logistic and linear regression models were used to analyze associations of frequency and quantity of genital HIV-1 RNA with behavioral and biological factors, adjusting for within-woman correlation. The lower limit of detection of HIV-1 RNA in plasma and eCVL samples was 300 copies per milliliter.
One hundred and eighty-eight participants initiated ART from 2004 to 2011. PVL was detectable in 16% (171/1050) of visits, in 52% (90/174) of women. Cervicovaginal HIV-1 RNA was detectable in 16% (128/798) of visits with undetectable plasma HIV-1 RNA in 45% (77/170) of women. After adjusting for PVL, detectable cervicovaginal HIV-1 RNA was independently associated with abnormal vaginal discharge and use of nevirapine or zidovudine vs. efavirenz and stavudine, respectively; longer time on ART and hormonal contraception were not associated with increased shedding. The presence of bacterial vaginosis, herpes simplex virus-2 DNA, and the use of nevirapine vs efavirenz were independently associated with an increased quantity of cervicovaginal HIV-1 RNA.
Certain ART regimens, abnormal vaginal discharge, bacterial vaginosis, and genital herpes simplex virus-2 are associated with HIV-1 cervicovaginal shedding or quantity in women on ART after adjusting for PVL. This may reduce the effectiveness of ART as prevention in high-risk populations.
antiretrovirals; HIV-1 RNA; cervicovaginal lavage; nevirapine; bacterial vaginosis; herpes simplex virus type-2