HIV nephropathy and the Duffy antigen/receptor for chemokines in African Americans

I. J. Woolley, R. Kalayjian, H. Valdez, N. Hamza, G. Jacobs, M. M. Lederman, P. A. Zimmerman

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Background and objectives: HIV nephropathy (HIVAN) is markedly racially biased in its distribution, occurring in about 10% of HIV infected African Americans according to some studies. Based upon previous laboratory and epidemiological studies, the Duffy promoter polymorphism, which occurs almost exclusively in individuals of African descent, has been postulated to be the predisposing factor. We aimed to explore that relationship by direct genotyping individuals with HIV nephropathy to determine the proportion homozygous for this mutation to test the hypothesis it was responsible for the genetic component of this disease. We anticipated that if the polymorphism was associated with HIV nephropathy all individuals would be homozygous for this mutation. Method: Individuals with HIVAN proven on biopsy were identified from previous studies and a pre-existing clinical database. This diagnosis was confirmed by an experienced pathologist examining the biopsies in a blinded fashion. PCR and RFLP strategies were used on the biopsy samples to genotype for the Duffy promoter polymorphism. The cases were compared to a control population of HIV seronegative African Americans. Results: Twenty African American individuals with HIV nephropathy were successfully genotyped. Only nine were homozygous for the promoter mutation. Nine were heterozygous and two homozygous wild type. Furthermore, the frequency of the polymorphism did not differ from the background rate in the African American population (OR = 0.78 95% confidence intervals 0.378-1.64). Conclusion: The Duffy promoter polymorphism was not disproportionately represented in persons with HIVAN calling into question any significant role in the pathogenesis of HIVAN.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)384-387
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Nephrology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes


  • DARC (Duffy antigen/receptor for chemokines)
  • Fy antigen
  • HIV nephropathy

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