Global dispersal pattern of HIV type 1 subtype CRF01-AE: A genetic trace of human mobility related to heterosexual sexual activities centralized in southeast Asia

Konstantinos Angelis, Jan Albert, Ioannis Mamais, Gkikas Magiorkinis, Angelos Hatzakis, Osamah Hamouda, Daniel Struck, Jurgen Vercauteren, Annemarie M.J. Wensing, Ivailo Alexiev, Birgitta Åsjö, Claudia Balotta, Ricardo J. Camacho, Suzie Coughlan, Algirdas Griskevicius, Zehava Grossman, Andrzej Horban, Leondios G. Kostrikis, Snjezana Lepej, Kirsi LiitsolaMarek Linka, Claus Nielsen, Dan Otelea, Roger Paredes, Mario Poljak, Elisabeth Puchhammer-Stöckl, Jean Claude Schmit, Anders Sönnerborg, Danica Staneková, Maja Stanojevic, Charles A.B. Boucher, Lauren Kaplan, Anne Mieke Vandamme, Dimitrios Paraskevis*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    51 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Background. Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) subtype CRF01-AE originated in Africa and then passed to Thailand, where it established a major epidemic. Despite the global presence of CRF01-AE, little is known about its subsequent dispersal pattern. Methods. We assembled a global data set of 2736 CRF01-AE sequences by pooling sequences from public databases and patient-cohort studies. We estimated viral dispersal patterns, using statistical phylogeographic analysis run over bootstrap trees estimated by the maximum likelihood method. Results. We show that Thailand has been the source of viral dispersal to most areas worldwide, including 17 of 20 sampled countries in Europe. Japan, Singapore, Vietnam, and other Asian countries have played a secondary role in the viral dissemination. In contrast, China and Taiwan have mainly imported strains from neighboring Asian countries, North America, and Africa without any significant viral exportation. Discussion. The central role of Thailand in the global spread of CRF01-AE can be probably explained by the popularity of Thailand as a vacation destination characterized by sex tourism and by Thai emigration to the Western world. Our study highlights the unique case of CRF01-AE, the only globally distributed non-B clade whose global dispersal did not originate in Africa.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1735-1744
    Number of pages10
    JournalJournal of Infectious Diseases
    Volume211
    Issue number11
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2015

    Keywords

    • CRF01-AE
    • HIV-1
    • dispersal pattern
    • migration
    • phylogeography

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