Genetic variants in nonclassical major histocompatibility complex class I human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-E and HLA-G molecules are associated with susceptibility to heterosexual acquisition of HIV-1

Julie Lajoie, John Hargrove, Lynn S Zijenah, Jean H Humphrey, Brian J Ward, Michel Roger
Journal of Infectious Diseases 2006 January 15, 193 (2): 298-301
Human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-E and HLA-G molecules act as powerful modulators of the innate immune response. The present study shows that the HLA-E(G) genetic variant (the HLA-E*0103 allele) alone is significantly (P = .001) associated with a 4.0-fold decreased risk of human immunodeficiency virus 1 (HIV-1) infection in Zimbabwean women. Furthermore, women carrying the combination of the protective HLA-E(G) homozygote and HLA-G*0105N heterozygote genotypes had a 12.5-fold decreased risk of HIV-1 infection (P = .03), compared with women carrying neither genotype. These associations remained significant after adjustment was made for other significant sociodemographic risk factors for HIV prevalence in this population. In conclusion, HLA-E and HLA-G polymorphisms can independently and synergistically influence susceptibility to heterosexual acquisition of HIV-1.

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