Background: Host restriction factors are cellular proteins able to diminish or block viral
replication in a cell-specific way.
Objective and Method: We evaluated the distribution of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) in
APOBEC3G (rs3736685, rs2294367) and CUL5 (rs7117111, rs7103534, rs11212495) genes, among
264 HIV-1 infected (HIV-1+) and 259 unexposed- uninfected individuals from Northeast Brazil,
looking for a possible association with susceptibility to HIV-1 infection, viral load during treatment,
CD4+ T cell count and therapeutic success of the antiretroviral treatment.
Results: The rs11212495 CUL5 G allele and the CUL5 rs7103534-rs7117111 CG haplotype were
more frequent among unexposed-uninfected than in HIV-1+ individuals, suggesting an association
with a lower HIV-1 infection susceptibility. The APOBEC3G rs2294367 G/C genotype correlated
with delayed viral load suppression. Our results showed a great heterogeneity in relation to the literature
findings, possibly due to ethnic differences among the studied populations, sample size used
in the studies and, also, to the type of controls, i.e. in our study used unexposed-uninfected rather
than exposed-uninfected individuals (rare and considered gold standard for susceptibility studies).
Conclusion: Our findings report genetic variants possibly associated with susceptibility to HIV-1
infection (CUL5 rs11212495, rs7103534, rs7117111) and partial viral load control (APOBEC3G
rs2294367). Replica studies performed on higher number of subjects are envisaged to confirm our