Archives of virology 2017 10 05() doi 10.1007/s00705-017-3572-1
HIV-1 transmitted drug resistance (TDR) occurs when primary viruses bear drug resistance mutations (DRMs). TDR causes first-line antiretroviral (ARV) therapy (ART) failure and is becoming more pronounced due to the widespread use of ART. With the absence of routine individual-level drug resistance testing, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends the tracking of TDR mutations and optimizing the first-line ART following pre-treatment drug resistance (PDR) surveys. Here, we report the PDR frequency for the first time in Hormozgan, a southern province of Iran. In this study, 41 blood samples from HIV-1-positive ART-candidate volunteers were collected across the province between April 2016 and March 2017. Phylogenetic analysis of the sequenced protease (PR) and reverse transcriptase (RT) regions showed that 39 out of 41 samples (95%) were CRF35_AD and the two remaining cases were subtype B (2.5%) and C (2.5%). D67G (2.4%), a mutation that reduces susceptibility to nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs) was the only detectable TDR mutation in this population. Two other DRMs, including E138A (9.7%) and V179T (4.9%), which confer resistance to non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs), were also identified. Although no major protease inhibitor (PI) resistance mutations were detected, the minor mutations L10F and L33F (2.5% each) as well as several highly frequent polymorphic mutations were identified. Our results show a PDR frequency of 17% in infected individuals from Hormozgan, classified further as 2.4% NRTIs and 14.6% NNRTIs. These results suggest that first-line ART should be practiced carefully in Hormozgan province, and alternative regimens may become necessary for all starters.