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J Infect Dis. 2014 Jan 15;209(2):304-13. doi: 10.1093/infdis/jit524. Epub 2013 Oct 22.

The global transmission network of HIV-1.

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  • 1Department of Pathology.

Abstract

Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) is pandemic, but its contemporary global transmission network has not been characterized. A better understanding of the properties and dynamics of this network is essential for surveillance, prevention, and eventual eradication of HIV. Here, we apply a simple and computationally efficient network-based approach to all publicly available HIV polymerase sequences in the global database, revealing a contemporary picture of the spread of HIV-1 within and between countries. This approach automatically recovered well-characterized transmission clusters and extended other clusters thought to be contained within a single country across international borders. In addition, previously undescribed transmission clusters were discovered. Together, these clusters represent all known modes of HIV transmission. The extent of international linkage revealed by our comprehensive approach demonstrates the need to consider the global diversity of HIV, even when describing local epidemics. Finally, the speed of this method allows for near-real-time surveillance of the pandemic's progression.

KEYWORDS:

human immunodeficiency virus; molecular epidemiology; transmission network

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PMID:
24151309
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3873788
Free PMC Article
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