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High Prevalence of HIV-1 Drug Resistance and Dynamics of Transmission Among High-Risk Populations in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

  • Author(s): Jean Louis, Frantz
  • Domercant, Jean
  • Ignacio, Caroline
  • Gianella, Sara
  • Galbaud, Guethina
  • Leonard, Maureen
  • Smith, David
  • Chaillon, Antoine
  • et al.

BACKGROUND: In low HIV prevalence settings, understanding the transmission dynamics and the impact of drug resistance is critical to curb down the epidemic. This study aims to explore the prevalence and dynamics of transmission of HIV drug-resistance mutations (DRMs) among key populations in Haiti. SETTINGS: Eligible participants (naive, treated) were selected from 7 key population friendly health care centers in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, from September 2018 to July 2019. METHODS: A total of 119 HIV-1 pol sequences were analyzed from men having sex with men (MSM), female sex workers (FSWs), and their sexual partners. Screening for HIV DRMs was performed using the Stanford University Drug Resistance Database. Phylogenetic and network analyses using HIV-TRACE software were performed to infer putative relationships and shared DRMs. RESULTS: Of the 119 participants, 62.2% were men (74/119), and 75.7% of them (56/74) reported MSM as a main risk factor. The overall DRM prevalence was 58.8% (70/119). A DRM was observed in 37.5% of MSM (21/56), 82.2% of FSWs (37/45), and 66.7% (12/18) among FSWs clients. In a multivariate model, age and FSWs were significant predictors for DRMs (P = 0.001). Transmission network analysis found 24 of the 119 (20.2%) genetically linked individuals forming 8 clusters. Clustering participants were mostly MSM (15/24; 62.5%). Five clusters (62.5%) had shared DRMs, and K103N and M184V were the main shared mutations. CONCLUSIONS: High prevalence of HIV DRMs was observed among MSM, FSWs, and their clients in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Network analysis revealed frequent DRM transmission among genetically linked individuals, highlighting the need for appropriate interventions to limit HIV transmission in these high-risk populations.

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