Biological characterization of HIV type 1 envelope V3 regions from mothers and infants associated with perinatal transmission

Erik Matala, Tobias Hahn, Venkat R.K. Yedavalli, Nafees Ahmad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

30 Scopus citations


Our previous study has shown that the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) envelope V3 region minor genotypes of infected mothers were transmitted to their infants and predominated initially as a homogeneous virus population in the infants (Ahmad N, Baroudy BM, Baker RC, et al.: J Virol 1995;69:1001 -1012). Here we have characterized the biological properties, including cellular tropism, replication efficiency, cytopathic effects, and coreceptor utilization, of these V3 region isolates from mothers and infants. Nineteen V3 region sequences from three mother-infant pairs, including the minor variants of mothers and the major variants of infants as characterized in our previous study, were reciprocally inserted into an HIV-1 infectious molecular clone, pNL4-3, and chimeric viruses were generated by DNA transfections into HeLa cells. Equal amounts of chimeric viruses were then used to infect T lymphocyte cell lines (A3.01 and MT-2), primary blood lymphocytes (PBLs), primary monocyte-derived macrophages (MDMs), and coreceptor cell lines. We found that the V3 region chimeras failed to replicate in T lymphocyte cell lines but replicated in MDMs and PBLs, albeit at reduced levels compared with R5 laboratory HIV-1 strains. In addition, the V3 region chimeras were able to infect the HOS-CD4+CCR5+ cell line, suggesting CCR5 coreceptor utilization. Moreover, the V3 region chimeras were unable to induce syncytia in MT-2 cells, indicative of non-syncytium-inducing (NSI) phenotypes. In conclusion, the HIV-1 minor genotypes of infected mothers with macrophage-tropic and NSI or R5 phenotypes are transmitted to their infants and are initially maintained with the same properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1725-1735
Number of pages11
JournalAIDS Research and Human Retroviruses
Issue number18
StatePublished - Dec 1 2001


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

Cite this