Background: HIV-1 natural viral suppressors (NVS) are individuals that control HIV replication without antiretrovirals (also know as HIV elite controllers). We have recently shown that these individuals have an elevated rate of hepatitis C virus (HCV) clearance. Given the association of IL28B genotype, specifically the rs12979860 single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) based CC genotype, with HCV clearance, we studied its association with HIV control in 172 African American HIV subjects and 173 race-matched controls.
Findings: The frequency of the CC genotype was 12.5% in the NVS, 14.7% in the LVL (“low viral load” cohort with 400–20,000 HIV-1 RNA copies/mL), 17.8% in the MHVL (“medium/high viral load” cohort with >20,000 HIV-1 RNA copies/mL), and 11.6% in an HIV-negative cohort. There was no statistical significance in the CC genotype distribution between these cohorts (p= 0.48 between the NVS and non-NVS HIV positive controls, p= 0.85 between NVS and HIV-negatives). We also did not observe any association between CC genotype distribution and HIV RNA viral load, as a continuous measure.
Conclusions: The IL28B CC genotype does not account for the noted HIV control in our specific NVS cohort. Further studies will be needed to determine if a common genetic factor can primarily account for any joint clearance of HCV and control of HIV. Clin Trans Sci 2011; Volume 4: 282–284