The Latitude Wise Prevalence of the CCR5-Δ32-HIV Resistance Allele in India
The chemokine receptor CCR5 plays a crucial role during CD4-mediated entry of HIV-1 in macrophages and a 32 bp deletion in the CCR5 gene (CCR5-Δ32) confers protection against HIV infection and AIDS progression. To evaluate the contribution of this host genetic factor in aggravating India's HIV/AIDS problem, we exclusively examined the frequency of CCR5-Δ32 in 43 different ethnic endogamous Indian populations comprising 1,882 individuals and its latitude-wise distribution in India. This is the first report of prevalence and latitude-wise distribution of CCR5-Δ32 in such large scale in India, which indicates that most of the Indian populations lack the CCR5-Δ32 mutation. This mutation was exhibited in only 13 out of the 43 ethnic populations of India studied with allelic frequency 0.62 - 5%. Southward decreasing cline was observed for frequencies of CCR5-Δ32 (0.79% to 5.0% in North vs. 0.62% to 1.4% South). These results are in accordance with HIV/AIDS prevalence in India, and suggest that absence of CCR5-Δ32 mutation may be one of the important factors for HIV/AIDS incidence in India.