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J Virol. 1998 Apr;72(4):3418-22.

Virological and molecular demonstration of human immunodeficiency virus type 2 vertical transmission.

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Departamento de Microbiologia, Faculdade de Farmácia, Universidade de Lisboa, Lisbon, Portugal.


To demonstrate that human immunodeficiency virus type 2 (HIV-2) mother-to-child transmission exists, HIV-2 isolates were obtained from both an asymptomatic mother (HIV-2 strain ARM), and her child (HIV-2 strain SAR), who had a diagnosis of AIDS. To determine their biological phenotype, primary isolates were used to infect various primary mononuclear cells and cell lines. HIV-2 ARM replicates in primary cells and Jurkat-tat, while HIV-2 SAR infects these cells plus SupT1, which led us to classify HIV-2 ARM as a slow/low virus and HIV-2 SAR as having an intermediate (slow/low-3) phenotype. Molecular analysis of the env region corresponding to gp125 was performed. Viral DNA was cloned, sequenced, and used to construct phylogenetic trees. The DNA sequence analysis demonstrated an overall nucleotide diversity of 7.6%. The results present evidence that the child's strain is more virulent than the mother's strain, which is in agreement with the immunodeficiency of the child. The phylogenetic trees that were constructed demonstrate that the two isolates cluster together, being closer to each other than to any other isolate described until now.

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