Author(s): Hemelaar J, Gouws E, Ghys PD, Osmanov S, Hemelaar J, Gouws E, Ghys PD, Osmanov S
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: To estimate the global and regional distribution of HIV-1 subtypes and recombinants in 2004. DESIGN: A study was conducted in which molecular epidemiological data on HIV-1 subtype distribution in individual countries were combined with country-specific estimates of the number of people living with HIV. METHODS: HIV-1 subtype data were collected for 23 874 HIV-1 samples from 70 countries, which together accounted for 89\% of all people living with HIV worldwide in 2004. The proportions of HIV-1 infections due to various subtypes detected in each country were combined with the number of HIV infected people in the respective countries to generate regional and global HIV-1 subtype distribution estimates. RESULTS: Subtype C accounted for 50\% of all infections worldwide in 2004. Subtypes A, B, D and G accounted for 12\%, 10\%, 3\% and 6\%, respectively. The subtypes F, H, J and K together accounted for 0.94\% of infections. The circulating recombinant forms CRF01_AE and CRF02_AG each were responsible for 5\% of cases, and CRF03_AB for 0.1\%. Other recombinants accounted for the remaining 8\% of infections. All recombinant forms taken together were responsible for 18\% of infections worldwide. CONCLUSION: Combining data on HIV-1 subtype distribution in individual countries with country-specific estimates of the number of people living with HIV provided a good method to generate estimates of the global and regional HIV-1 genetic diversity in 2004. The results could serve as an important resource for HIV scientists, public health officials and HIV vaccine developers.
This article was published in AIDS
and referenced in HIV: Current Research