Human Genetic Variation and HIV/AIDS in Papua New Guinea: Time to Connect the Dots
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Purpose of Review
Human genetic polymorphisms known to influence HIV acquisition and disease progression occur in Papua New Guinea (PNG). However, no genetic association study has been reported so far. In this article, we review research findings, with a view to stimulate genotype-to-phenotype research.
PNG, a country in Oceania, has a high prevalence of HIV and many sexually transmitted infections. While limited data is available from this country regarding the distribution of human genetic polymorphisms known to influence clinical outcomes of HIV/AIDS, genetic association studies are lacking. Our studies, in the past decade, have revealed that polymorphisms in chemokine receptor-ligand (CCR2-CCR5, CXCL12), innate immune (Toll-like receptor, β-defensin), and antiretroviral drug-metabolism enzyme (CYP2B6, UGT2B7) genes are prevalent in PNG.
Although our results need to be validated in further studies, it is urgent to pursue large-scale, comprehensive genetic association studies that include these as well as additional genetic polymorphisms.
KeywordsCCR5 CYP2B6 HIV/AIDS. Human genetic variation Papua New Guinea
I dedicate this review to my respected friend and guide Dr. Mark Stoneking (Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, Germany), who has inspired me through his worldwide work on human genetics.
I have undoubtedly been influenced, in the present work, by the advice and assistance which I have received from my teachers, friends, and fellow workers. Such help is impossible to assess, or even to define. Though nameless here, they are not forgotten and I offer my sincere gratitude to them. Nevertheless, I take full responsibility for all the views expressed in this article, and if I have fallen into errors, the fault is mine, and not attributable to those who have helped me.
This work was supported by a Development Award from the Center for AIDS Research, University Hospitals Case Medical Center, Cleveland, OH, U.S.A. (NIH grant #AI36219); an Infectious Diseases Research Support from STERIS Corporation, Mentor, OH, U.S.A. and a Large Pilot Grant from the Case Western Reserve University/Cleveland Clinic CTSA grant #UL1RR024989 (National Center for Research Resources, NIH). Financial support was also provided by the Fogarty International Center (NIH, D43TW007377).
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Conflict of Interest
The author declares that he has no competing interests.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by the author.
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