To estimate the nationwide and regional distribution of HIV-1 genotypes in China in the past three decades, province-specific HIV-1 molecular epidemiology data were derived from 260 independent studies of HIV molecular prevalence through searching PubMed, VIP Chinese Journal Database (VIP), China National Knowledge Infrastructure, and Wanfang Data from Jan. 1981 to Dec. 2015. The nationwide and regional distribution of HIV-1 genotypes was estimated by weighting the genotypes distribution from each province- and risk-specific subpopulation with the number of reported cases in the corresponding subgroups in the relevant periods. A sharp transition of HIV-1 subtypes and recombinants distribution was observed in various risk groups and regions over the time. CRF01_AE has rapidly surged among almost all risk groups and in all areas, and become dominant among men who have sex with men (MSM) and heterosexuals (HET). A wide variety of new circulating recombinant forms (CRFs) and unique recombinant forms (URFs) were rapidly appearing in several risk groups and regions. After 2007, CRF01_AE was the most prevalent strain, accounting for 42.5% of all national infections, followed by CRF07_BC (28.9%), subtype B (10.9%), CRF08_BC (10.0%) and subtype C (2.8%). URFs and other CRFs were responsible for 2.6% and fewer than 1% of infections nationwide, respectively. The nationwide and regional distributions of HIV-1 subtypes and recombinants were sharply shifting in China. CRF01_AE and new CRFs played an increasing role in the nationwide or regional HIV pandemic. The nationwide diversity of HIV-1 poses a formidable challenge to HIV vaccine development and disease prevention.
Nationwide trends in molecular epidemiology of HIV-1 in China.