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AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2002 Oct 10;18(15):1157-61.

Molecular analysis in support of an investigation of a cluster of HIV-1-infected women.

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Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia 30333, USA.


An investigation of a possible single-source sexual transmission case was conducted in upstate New York in 1997-1998 (MMWR 1999;48:413-416). Of 42 primary female contacts with the putative male index case, 13 tested positive for HIV infection. Blood was available for DNA sequencing (C2V3C3 region of the env gene and the p17-coding region of gag) from 10 of the 13 women, 1 HIV-infected secondary contact, and 2 HIV-infected persons from the community, but not from the index cam. Phylogenetic and distance analyses were performed with the inclusion of reference HIV subtype strains for both the env and gag gene regions, as was the two regions combined. A high degree of relatedness was found among DNA sequences of the 10 primary contacts that excluded reference strains, the secondary contact, and the community HIV control subjects. In conclusion, phylogenetic analysis of HIV strains in an epidemiologic investigation is highly useful in support of cluster identification, even without sampling from the putative index patient.

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