Limited emergence of resistance to integrase strand transfer inhibitors (INSTIs) in ART-experienced participants failing dolutegravir-based antiretroviral therapy: a cross-sectional analysis of a Northeast Nigerian cohort.
Abdullahi A., Kida IM., Maina UA., Ibrahim AH., Mshelia J., Wisso H., Adamu A., Onyemata JE., Edun M., Yusuph H., Aliyu SH., Charurat M., Abimiku A., Abeler-Dorner L., Fraser C., Bonsall D., PANGEA consortium None., Kemp SA., Gupta RK.
BACKGROUND: Due to the high prevalence of resistance to NNRTI-based ART since 2018, consolidated recommendations from the WHO have indicated dolutegravir as the preferred drug of choice for HIV treatment globally. There is a paucity of resistance outcome data from HIV-1 non-B subtypes circulating across West Africa. AIMS: We characterized the mutational profiles of persons living with HIV from a cross-sectional cohort in North-East Nigeria failing a dolutegravir-based ART regimen. METHODS: WGS of plasma samples collected from 61 HIV-1-infected participants following virological failure of dolutegravir-based ART were sequenced using the Illumina platform. Sequencing was successfully completed for samples from 55 participants. Following quality control, 33 full genomes were analysed from participants with a median age of 40 years and median time on ART of 9 years. HIV-1 subtyping was performed using SNAPPy. RESULTS: Most participants had mutational profiles reflective of exposure to previous first- and second-line ART regimens comprised NRTIs and NNRTIs. More than half of participants had one or more drug resistance-associated mutations (DRMs) affecting susceptibility to NRTIs (17/33; 52%) and NNRTIs (24/33; 73%). Almost a quarter of participants (8/33; 24.4%) had one or more DRMs affecting tenofovir susceptibility. Only one participant, infected with HIV-1 subtype G, had evidence of DRMs affecting dolutegravir susceptibility-this was characterized by the T66A, G118R, E138K and R263K mutations. CONCLUSIONS: This study found a low prevalence of resistance to dolutegravir; the data are therefore supportive of the continual rollout of dolutegravir as the primary first-line regimen for ART-naive participants and the preferred switch to second-line ART across the region. However, population-level, longer-term data collection on dolutegravir outcomes are required to further guide implementation and policy action across the region.