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International Journal of Infectious Diseases: Volume 3, Number 4
Genotype and Allele Frequency of a 32-Base Pair Deletion Mutation in the CCR5 Gene in Various Ethnic Groups: Absence of Mutation among Asians and Pacific Islanders
Yuanan Lu, PhD; Vivek R. Nerurkar, PhD; Wan-Mohaiza Dashwood, BS; Cora L. Woodward, BS; Sherimay Ablan, BA; Cecilia M. Shikuma, MD; Andrew Grandinetti, PhD; Healani Chang, MPH; Hien Tran Nguyen, MD; Zunyou Wu, MD; Yasuhiro Yamamura, PhD; William O. Boto, PhD; Andrew Merriwether, PhD; Takeshi Kurata, MD, PhD; Roger Detels, MD; and Richard Yanagihara, MD

Int J Infect Dis 1999; 3:186-191.

Background: A 32-base pair (bp) deletion mutation in the beta-chemokine receptor CCR5 gene has been associated with resistance against human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection and disease. Large-scale studies conducted among Caucasians indicate that individuals who are homozygous for this deletion mutation (D32/D32) are protected against HIV-1 infection despite multiple high-risk exposures, whereas CCR5/ D32 heterozygotes have a slower progression to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Objective: To determine the genotype and allele frequencies of the CCR5 gene 32-bp deletion mutation among ethnically diverse non-Caucasian populations. Methods: DNA, extracted from blood collected between 1980 and 1997 from 1912 individuals belonging to various ethnic groups, including 363 Caucasians, 303 Puerto Rican Hispanics, 150 Africans, 606 Asians, and 490 Pacific Islanders, were analyzed for the CCR5 gene 32-bp deletion mutation by a polymerase chain reaction (PCR)-based assay, using an oligonucleotide primer pair designed to discriminate CCR5 alleles without restriction endonuclease analysis. Results: The comparative frequency of CCR5/D32 heterozygosity was 61 of 363 (16.8%) in Caucasians, 17 of 303 (5.6%) in Puerto Rican Hispanics, 9 of 490 (1.8%) in Pacific Islanders, 0 of 606 (0%) in Asians, and 0 of 150 (0%) in Africans. Conclusions: The data confirm the high frequency of CCR5/D32 heterozygosity among Caucasians. Intermediate and low-level D32 allele frequencies among Puerto Rican Hispanics and Hawaiians could be attributed to recent European Caucasian gene flow. By contrast, the inability to detect the D32 allele among Asians and other Pacific Islander groups suggests that other mechanisms are responsible for resistance to HIV-1 infection in these populations.

KEYWORDS: chemokine receptor, human immunodeficiency virus, Melanesia, Micronesia, polymerase chain reaction, Polynesia, population genetics

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