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Genetic Polymorphisms in the Chemokine and Chemokine Receptors: Impact on Clinical Course and Therapy of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Infection (HIV-1)

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The natural history and pathogenic processes of infection by the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) are complex, variable, and dependent upon a multitude of viral and host factors and their interactions. The CCR5-Δ32 allele remains the most important genetic factor known to be associated with host resistance to the HIV-1 infection. However, other mutations in the CCR5, CCR2, CX3CR1, CXCL12 (SDF1), and CCL5 (RANTES) genes have been identified and associated with host resistance and/or susceptibility to HIV-1 infection and disease progression. Some studies have also suggested that chemokine receptor gene polymorphisms may affect response to potent antiretroviral therapy. This article reviews the polymorphisms already described in the mutant chemokine receptors or ligands and their impact on the host susceptibility to HIV-1 infection and on the clinical course of the disease, as well as the development of new anti-HIV therapies that takes into account these potential targets in the host. These genetic polymorphisms could be used as genetic markers to detect individuals at higher risk of developing either a faster disease progression or therapeutic failure. Once these individuals are identified, therapeutic strategies based on either different, more aggressive drugs or combinations of drugs can be used, either alone or in combination with shorter intervals for therapeutic monitoring. Pharmacogenetics is very likely to underlie future therapies for HIV-1 infection, and current patients with multi-resistance to the existing antiretroviral agents could also benefit from this approach. These developments also underscore the importance of continuing the investigation of new therapies targeted to the host in order to inhibit the HIV-1 entry into the host cells.
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Keywords: AIDS; HIV-1 infection; antiretroviral therapy; chemokine receptors; genetic polymorphisms

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Pathology, Clinical Analysis, and Toxicology; Health Sciences Center, University Hospital, State University of Londrina, Av. Robert Koch, 60, Vila Operaria, CEP 83038-440,Londrina, Parana, Brazil.

Publication date: 2007-05-01

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