The Role of APOBEC3G in Acute HIV-1 Subtype C Infection

Kavidha Reddy, Thumbi Ndung'u

Abstract


APOBEC3G is a candidate novel Aids Restriction Gene. This host factor has previously been shown in vitro to restrict HIV replication and play a significant role in resistance to HIV infection and in early virus replication. Understanding how host factors, like APOBEC3G  influence HIV susceptibility and early replication may lead to the development of novel vaccines and therapies. There is an urgent need to focus these studies to countries most burdened by HIV, because frequencies of genetic alleles involved may differ between populations and because biomedical intervention strategies must be designed for and tested in these populations. 

We hypothesize that the antiviral host enzyme APOBEC3G, previously shown in vitro to restrict HIV replication, plays a significant role in resistance to HIV infection and in early virus replication. We will investigate whether levels of APOBEC3G influence resistance to HIV-1 infection and viral load during acute HIV-1C infection. Further, we will investigate whether differential levels and/or genetic variants of APOBEC3G have a modifying role on early HIV-1 replication and viral evolution.