HLA-A and -B allele expression and ability to develop anti-Gag cross-clade responses in subtype C HIV-1-infected Ethiopians.
A cohort of 35 human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) subtype C-infected Ethiopians was studied to define the HLA phenotype in all 35 subjects and highly conserved Gag protein regions involved in cross-clade cell-mediated immunity. Full-length Gag virus sequences were determined in 15 individuals. CD8 cell-mediated immune responses were detected by interferon-gamma ELISpot assay. HLA-A*03, -B*49, and -B*57 allelic frequencies were relatively higher than in other African populations. Anti-p17 (aa 1-60) CD8+ were detectable in the highest number of individuals. Anti-p17 (aa 1-60 and 51-110) cross-clade responses against subtype B and C were detected in 50% of the tested subjects. The p24 KF11 (aa 162-172) epitope was found to be immunodominant among the HLA-B*5703--positive individuals. These data represent the first report of correlating HLA phenotype and HIV-specific cell-mediated immune responses among infected Ethiopians and may be useful in designing cytotoxic T lymphocyte-inducing vaccines for this part of Africa.
Ferrari, G; Currier, JR; Harris, ME; Finkelstein, S; de Oliveira, A; Barkhan, D; Cox, JH; Zeira, M; Weinhold, KJ; Reinsmoen, N; McCutchan, F; Birx, DL; Osmanov, S; Maayan, S
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