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Influence of INF-gamma gene polymorphism in HTLV-1 proviral load


Interferon-gamma (INF-γ) is a key cytokine involved in the defense against intracellular pathogens, such as HTLV-1, by coordinating the expression of immunologically relevant genes. Previous studies showed the importance of this cytokine on HTLV-1-related pathogenesis. Thus, we have investigated the possible association between IFN-γ gene single-nucleotide polymorphism linked to high and low producer phenotypes (IFN-γ [+874T(high) → A(low)]) and risk of development of symptoms related with HTLV-1 infection and proviral load.


The polymorphism +874 T/A of INF-γ was analyzed by PCR-SSP in 93 patients HLTV-1 positive (HAC + HAM), stratified according to the presence (HAM, n = 50) or not (HAC, n = 43) of symptoms, and healthy controls (n = 150). Proviral load of infected patients (HAC and HAM) was determined by real-time PCR.


No significant difference was observed for allelic and genotypic frequencies of the +874T/A polymorphism of INF-γ when correlated with HAC, HAM and healthy controls groups. The median of proviral load was lower in HAC than HAM group (p=0.0131). Also, the p-value is very close to significance (p=0.0523) for +874TT genotype (high producer of INF-γ) and low proviral load, compared to the genotypes +874AA and +874AT.


Despite the lack of significant associations, the low proviral load appears correlated with high producer of INF-γ (+874TT) genotype. Increasing the number of patients may lead to statistical relationship of the +874TT genotype with low proviral load.


Financial Support FAPESP, CNPq, CTC/FUNDHERP and INCTC.

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Correspondence to Rodrigo Haddad.

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This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Haddad, R., Rocha–Junior, M.C., Cilião-Alves, D.C. et al. Influence of INF-gamma gene polymorphism in HTLV-1 proviral load. Retrovirology 8 (Suppl 1), A119 (2011).

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