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AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2007 Dec;23(12):1599-604.

New insights into the origin of the HIV type 1 subtype A epidemic in former Soviet Union's countries derived from sequence analyses of preepidemically transmitted viruses.

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Centro Nacional de Microbiología, Instituto de Salud Carlos III, Majadahonda, Madrid, Spain.


The HIV-1 subtype A epidemic affecting injecting drug users (IDU) in former Soviet Union (FSU) countries started dramatically in Odessa, southern Ukraine, in 1995, and is caused by a variant of monophyletic origin, often designated IDU-A. We phylogenetically analyzed one near full-length genome and two partial sequences of three HIV-1 subtype A viruses collected in St. Petersburg, Russia, heterosexually transmitted in 1992-1994. The sequences branched basally to the IDU-A clade, together with eight viruses from Odessa collected in 1993, all presumably acquired heterosexually, and two viruses from the Democratic Republic of Congo. Of all other FSU sequences in databases, only those from three recently collected viruses, one from Ukraine and two from northwestern Russia, at least one of them acquired heterosexually, branched basally to the IDU-A cluster. The results indicate that the FSU IDU-A variant derives from a strain that initially propagated heterosexually in Ukraine and originated in central Africa.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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