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J Clin Microbiol. 1999 Sep;37(9):2910-2.

Polymorphism of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) protease gene and response of HIV-1-infected patients to a protease inhibitor.

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  • 1Department of Virology, Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital, Paris, France.


In order to analyze the impact of protease gene polymorphism on response to regimens containing a protease inhibitor, the entire protease coding domain from 58 human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)-infected patients who were protease inhibitor naive was sequenced before therapy was started. Plasma HIV-1 RNA levels were measured at baseline and at month 3 and month 6 after treatment. All patients were treated with a combination of two reverse transcriptase inhibitors and a protease inhibitor (saquinavir EOF [n = 28], ritonavir [n = 16], or indinavir [n = 14]). Before treatment, 30 different positions whose codons differed from the subtype B consensus sequence were observed. Major mutations associated with protease inhibitor resistance were not observed. No statistical correlation between the number of amino acid differences and the treatment efficacy at month 3 (-2.4 log) or month 6 (-2.7 log) was observed. At baseline, genotypic analysis of the HIV-1 protease gene of patients who have never received a protease inhibitor does not allow prediction of the efficacy of regimens containing a protease inhibitor.

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