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AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2004 Aug;20(8):819-26.

HIV type 1 circulating recombinant form CRF09_cpx from west Africa combines subtypes A, F, G, and may share ancestors with CRF02_AG and Z321.

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  • 1Global Molecular Epidemiology Program, Henry M. Jackson Foundation, 1600 East Gude Drive, Rockville, Maryland 20850, USA.


Two HIV-1 intersubtype recombinant forms are circulating widely in populations and have become important strains in the pandemic: CRF01_AE in Southeast Asia and CRF02_AG in West and West Central Africa, respectively. Several other circulating recombinant forms (CRF) have also been identified, but with fewer numbers of infections and/or more limited geographic spread. Here we expand knowledge of HIV-1 CRF using clinical samples, principally from West Africa, that were difficult to classify by partial genome sequencing. DNA was extracted from primary patient peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC). The virtually complete HIV-1 genome was amplified by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and directly sequenced. Additional strains were characterized by partial envelope sequencing. Phylogenetic analysis was used to identify and map intersubtype recombination breakpoints. Four virtually complete genome sequences and two partial envelope sequences represent CRF09_cpx, a newly identified complex recombinant HIV-1 whose principal focus seems to be in West Africa. This recombinant includes segments of subtypes A, F, G, and unclassified genetic material. It shares unique unclassified regions with the early Zaire strain Z321. There are similarities in structure, but considerable genetic distances, between CRF09_cpx and CRF02_AG IbNG. In conclusion, it is possible that this CRF shared common ancestors with both Z321 and CRF02_AG in the course of the pandemic, perhaps arising by recombination between earlier forms of these strains. Although newly identified, at least one infection with CRF09_cpx has already occurred outside of Africa.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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