Nevirapine resistance mutations arise commonly following single or extended-dose nevirapine (ED-NVP) prophylaxis to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), but decay within 6-12 months of single-dose exposure. Use of ED-NVP prophylaxis in infants is expected to rise, but data on decay of nevirapine resistance mutations in infants in whom ED-NVP failed remain limited. We assessed, in Ethiopian infants participating in the Six-Week Extended Nevirapine (SWEN) Trial, the prevalence and persistence of nevirapine resistance mutations at 6 and 12 months following single-dose or up to 6 weeks of ED-NVP, and correlated their presence with the timing of infection and the type of resistance mutations. Standard population genotyping followed by high-throughput cloning were done on dried blood spot samples collected during the trial. More infants who received ED-NVP had nevirapine resistance detected by standard population genotyping (high frequencies) at age 6 months compared with those who received single-dose nevirapine (SD-NVP) (58% of 24 vs. 26% of 19, respectively; p = 0.06). Moreover, 56% of ED-NVP-exposed infants with nevirapine resistance at age 6 months still had nevirapine resistance mutations present at high frequencies at age 1 year. Infants infected before 6 weeks of age who received either SD- or ED-NVP were more likely to have Y181C or K103N; these mutations were also more likely to persist at high frequencies through 1 year of age. HIV-infected infants in whom ED-NVP prophylaxis fails are likely to experience delayed clearance of nevirapine-resistant virus in the first year of life, which in turn places them at risk for early selection of multidrug-resistant HIV after initial therapy with nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor-based regimens.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases