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Overrepresentation of Injection Drug Use Route of Infection Among Human Immunodeficiency Virus Long-term Nonprogressors: A Nationwide, Retrospective Cohort Study in China, 1989-2016.

  • Author(s): Han, Jing
  • Wu, Zunyou
  • McGoogan, Jennifer M
  • Mao, Yurong
  • Tang, Houlin
  • Li, Jian
  • Zhao, Yan
  • Jin, Cong
  • Detels, Roger
  • Brookmeyer, Ron
  • Lima, Viviane D
  • Montaner, Julio SG
  • et al.

Background:Why some persons living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) (PLWH) progress quickly and others remain "healthy" for a decade or more without treatment remains a fundamental question of HIV pathology. We aimed to assess the epidemiological characteristics of HIV long-term nonprogressors (LTNPs) based on a cohort of PLWH in China observed between 1989 and 2016. Methods:We conducted a nationwide, retrospective cohort study among Chinese PLWH with HIV diagnosed before 1 January 2008. Records were extracted from China's national HIV/AIDS database on 30 June 2016. LTNPs were defined as those with AIDS-free, antiretroviral therapy-naive survival, with CD4 cell counts consistently ≥500/μL for ≥8 years after diagnosis. Prevalence was calculated, characteristics were described, and determinants were assessed by means of logistic regression. Potential sources of bias were also investigated. Results:Our cohort included 89 201 participants, of whom 1749 (2.0%) were categorized as LTNPs. The injection drug use (IDU) route of infection was reported by 70.7% of LTNPs, compared with only 37.1% of non-LTNPs. The odds of LTNP status were greater among those infected via IDU (adjusted odds ratio [95% confidence interval], 2.28 [1.94-2.68]) and with HIV diagnosed in settings with large populations of persons who inject drugs (1.75 [1.51-2.02] for detention centers, 1.61 [1.39-1.87] for Yunnan, 1.94 [1.62-2.31] for Guangdong, and 2.90 [2.09-4.02] for Xinjiang). Conclusions:Overrepresentation of the IDU route of infection among LTNPs is a surprising finding worthy of further study, and this newly defined cohort may be particularly well suited to exploration of the molecular biological mechanisms underlying HIV long-term nonprogression.

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