Transmitted drug resistance (TDR) is an important public health issue, because TDR-associated mutation may affect the outcome of antiretroviral treatment potentially or directly. Men who have sex with men (MSM) constitute a major risk group for HIV transmission. However, current reports are scarce on HIV TDR-associated mutations and their co-variation among MSM.
Blood samples from 262 newly diagnosed HIV-positive, antiretroviral therapy (ART)-naïve MSM, were collected from January 2011 and December 2013 in Beijing. The polymerase viral genes were sequenced to explore TDR-associated mutations and mutation co-variation.
A total of 223 samples were sequenced and analyzed. Among them, HIV-1 CRF01_AE are accounted for 60.5%, followed by CRF07_BC (27.8%), subtype B (9.9%), and others. Fifty-seven samples had at least one TDR-associated mutation, mainly including L10I/V (6.3%), A71L/T/V (6.3%), V179D/E (5.4%), and V106I (2.7%), with different distributions of TDR-associated mutations by different HIV-1 subtypes and by each year. Moreover, eight significant co-variation pairs were found between TDR-associated mutations (V179D/E) and seven overlapping polymorphisms in subtype CRF01_AE.
To date, this work consists the most comprehensive genetic characterization of HIV-1 TDR-associated mutations prevalent among MSM. It provides important information for understanding TDR and viral evolution among Chinese MSM, a population currently at particularly high risk of HIV transmission.