The human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) rev exons 1 and 2 sequences were analyzed from six mother-infant pairs following perinatal transmission. The rev open reading frame was maintained with a frequency of 93.96% in six mother-infant pairs' sequences. There was a low degree of viral heterogeneity and estimates of genetic diversity in mother-infant pairs' rev sequences. However, the distances of rev sequences between epidemiologically unlinked individuals were greater than in epidemiologically linked mother-infant pairs. Furthermore, phylogenetic parameters revealed that the epidemiologically linked mother-infant pairs were closer evolutionarily to each other as compared with epidemiologically unlinked mother-infant pairs. Both mothers and infants were under positive selection pressure as determined by the ratios of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitutions. The functional domains required for Rev activity, including nuclear export of RNA, RNA binding domain, and nuclear import signals, were conserved in all mother-infant pairs' sequences. The conservation of functional domains of rev and a low degree of heterogeneity following vertical transmission are consistent with an indispensable role of rev in the HIV-1 life cycle.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases