There is scarce information about the molecular epidemiology of HIV-infection in Armenia (former USSR). The objective of this work was to estimate the distribution of HIV-1 subtypes in this country and get any information about HIV drug resistance in na?ve patients.
A joint study involving 78 patients was carried out in Yerevan, Armenia and Moscow, Russia in 2009-2013. The cohort studies included mostly IDUs (28.2%) and heterosexuals (69.2%).
The phylogenetic analyses based on population sequencing of partial pol gene found subtype A1 being the most prevalent (92.3%), followed by subtype B (3.9%). The HIV-1 tropism inferred from env V3-loop sequences was determined in 27 samples, among them R5-tropic viruses were found in 13 (48.1%) patients and X4- variants--in 14 (51.9%) patients. The prevalence of drug resistance in na?ve patients was low (1.5%) with the only one mutation K219Q found.
The composition and distribution of HIV-1 genetic variants in Armenia are evidently influenced by the Russian and other FSU countries epidemic, due to the significant volume of Armenian migrant/re-emigrant flows. Continued surveillance of HIV-1 circulating subtypes and drug resistance in Armenia is important for the proper management of HIV infection in this country.