Maternal IgG1 and IgA antibody to V3 loop consensus sequence and maternal-infant HIV-1 transmission

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Maternal-infant transmission of HIV-1 occurs in 13-40% of pregnancies. Studies on transmission of maternal immunity to HIV antigens have used antigens from viruses not representative of clinical isolates and have been conflicting. Using a consensus peptide sequence based on HIV isolates found in Haiti, we found that Haitian mothers who transmitted infection to their offspring had significantly higher mean concentrations of IgG1 antibodies to the V3 loop of the primary neutralising domain of the viral envelope (gp 160) than non-transmitters (p=0.02). Concentrations of IgA antibody to this domain were similar in transmitters and non-transmitters.

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