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Biores Open Access. 2012 Jan;1(1):41-9. doi: 10.1089/biores.2012.0215.

Phylogenetic Analysis of the Earliest nef Gene from Hemophiliacs and Local Controls in Korea.

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Department of Microbiology, University of Ulsan College of Medicine , Seoul, South Korea .


Twenty hemophiliacs (HPs) were found to have human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1) 1-2 years after exposure to Factor IX manufactured in Korea in late 1989. Plasma samples collected from donors O and P during their pre-seroconversion acute infection stage were used to manufacture clotting factors, including Factor IX, to treat these patients. To assess whether a genetic relationship exists between the viruses infecting HIV-1-positive HPs and those infecting plasma donors, we evaluated the nef sequences in 216 individuals. Frozen-stored serum samples obtained 1-3 years after the diagnosis of HIV-1 in the 20 HPs were used for amplification of the nef gene by reverse transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction, and amplicons were subjected to direct sequencing. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that the nef sequences from 143 of the samples belonged to the Korean subclade of HIV-1 subtype B (KSB). Sequences of the nef gene from donors O and P and the 20 HPs comprised two subclusters within KSB together with several local control (LC) sequences. In addition, signature pattern analysis revealed the presence of conserved nucleotides at eight positions in donors O and P compared with LCs (p<0.01). These nationwide and comprehensive nef data support the previous conclusion that HPs were infected with HIV-1 from the clotting factor, although the stringency of nef is weaker than for the pol and vif genes.


HIV-1; hemophilia; nef; phylogenetic analysis; signature pattern analysis

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