Evidence for a "Founder Effect" among HIV-infected injection drug users (IDUs) in Pakistan

Mohammad A. Rai, Vivek R. Nerurkar, Suhail Khoja, Saeed Khan, Richard Yanagihara, Arish Rehman, Shahana U. Kazmi, Syed H. Ali

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


Background: We have previously reported a HIV-1 subtype A infection in a community of injection drug users (IDUs) in Karachi, Pakistan. We now show that this infection among the IDUs may have originated from a single source.Methods: Phylogenetic analysis was performed of partial gag sequences, generated using PCR, from 26 HIV-positive IDU samples.Results: Our results showed formation of a tight monophyletic group with an intra-sequence identity of < 98% indicating a "founder effect". Our data indicate that the HIV-1 epidemic in this community of IDUs may have been transmitted by an HIV positive overseas contract worker who admitted to having contact with commercial sex workers during stay abroad.Conclusion: Specific measures need to implemented to control transmission of HIV infection in Pakistan through infected migrant workers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Publication statusPublished - Jan 12 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases

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