Interferon Regulatory Factor 1 Polymorphisms Previously Associated with Reduced HIV Susceptibility Have No Effect on HIV Disease Progression
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INTRODUCTION: Interferon regulatory factor 1 (IRF1) is induced by HIV early in the infection process and serves two functions: transactivation of the HIV-1 genome and thus replication, and eliciting antiviral innate immune responses. We previously described three IRF1 polymorphisms that correlate with reduced IRF1 expression and reduced HIV susceptibility. OBJECTIVE: To determine whether IRF1 polymorphisms previously associated with reduced HIV susceptibility play a role in HIV pathogenesis and disease progression in HIV-infected ART-naïve individuals. METHODS: IRF1 genotyping for polymorphisms (619, MS and 6516) was performed by PCR in 847 HIV positive participants from a sex worker cohort in Nairobi, Kenya. Rates of CD4+ T cell decline and viral loads (VL) were analyzed using linear mixed models. RESULTS: Three polymorphisms in the IRF1, located at 619, microsatellite region and 6516 of the gene, previously associated with decreased susceptibility to HIV infection show no effect on disease progression, either measured by HIV-1 RNA levels or the slopes of CD4 decline before treatment initiation. CONCLUSION: Whereas these three polymorphisms in the IRF1 gene protect against HIV-1 acquisition, they appear to exert no discernable effects once infection is established.