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Drivers of HIV-1 drug resistance to non-nucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) in nine southern African countries: a modelling study


Riou, Julien; Dupont, Carole; Bertagnolio, Silvia; Gupta, Ravindra K; Kouyos, Roger D; Egger, Matthias; Althaus, Christian L (2021). Drivers of HIV-1 drug resistance to non-nucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) in nine southern African countries: a modelling study. BMC Infectious Diseases, 21:1042.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION

The rise of HIV-1 drug resistance to non-nucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) threatens antiretroviral therapy's long-term success (ART). NNRTIs will remain an essential drug for the management of HIV-1 due to safety concerns associated with integrase inhibitors. We fitted a dynamic transmission model to historical data from 2000 to 2018 in nine countries of southern Africa to understand the mechanisms that have shaped the HIV-1 epidemic and the rise of pretreatment NNRTI resistance.

METHODS

We included data on HIV-1 prevalence, ART coverage, HIV-related mortality, and survey data on pretreatment NNRTI resistance from nine southern Africa countries from a systematic review, UNAIDS and World Bank. Using a Bayesian hierarchical framework, we developed a dynamic transmission model linking data on the HIV-1 epidemic to survey data on NNRTI drug resistance in each country. We estimated the proportion of resistance attributable to unregulated, off-programme use of ART. We examined each national ART programme's vulnerability to NNRTI resistance by defining a fragility index: the ratio of the rate of NNRTI resistance emergence during first-line ART over the rate of switching to second-line ART. We explored associations between fragility and characteristics of the health system of each country.

RESULTS

The model reliably described the dynamics of the HIV-1 epidemic and NNRTI resistance in each country. Predicted levels of resistance in 2018 ranged between 3.3% (95% credible interval 1.9-7.1) in Mozambique and 25.3% (17.9-33.8) in Eswatini. The proportion of pretreatment NNRTI resistance attributable to unregulated antiretroviral use ranged from 6% (2-14) in Eswatini to 64% (26-85) in Mozambique. The fragility index was low in Botswana (0.01; 0.0-0.11) but high in Namibia (0.48; 0.16-10.17), Eswatini (0.64; 0.23-11.8) and South Africa (1.21; 0.83-9.84). The combination of high fragility of ART programmes and high ART coverage levels was associated with a sharp increase in pretreatment NNRTI resistance.

CONCLUSIONS

This comparison of nine countries shows that pretreatment NNRTI resistance can be controlled despite high ART coverage levels. This was the case in Botswana, Mozambique, and Zambia, most likely because of better HIV care delivery, including rapid switching to second-line ART of patients failing first-line ART.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION

The rise of HIV-1 drug resistance to non-nucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) threatens antiretroviral therapy's long-term success (ART). NNRTIs will remain an essential drug for the management of HIV-1 due to safety concerns associated with integrase inhibitors. We fitted a dynamic transmission model to historical data from 2000 to 2018 in nine countries of southern Africa to understand the mechanisms that have shaped the HIV-1 epidemic and the rise of pretreatment NNRTI resistance.

METHODS

We included data on HIV-1 prevalence, ART coverage, HIV-related mortality, and survey data on pretreatment NNRTI resistance from nine southern Africa countries from a systematic review, UNAIDS and World Bank. Using a Bayesian hierarchical framework, we developed a dynamic transmission model linking data on the HIV-1 epidemic to survey data on NNRTI drug resistance in each country. We estimated the proportion of resistance attributable to unregulated, off-programme use of ART. We examined each national ART programme's vulnerability to NNRTI resistance by defining a fragility index: the ratio of the rate of NNRTI resistance emergence during first-line ART over the rate of switching to second-line ART. We explored associations between fragility and characteristics of the health system of each country.

RESULTS

The model reliably described the dynamics of the HIV-1 epidemic and NNRTI resistance in each country. Predicted levels of resistance in 2018 ranged between 3.3% (95% credible interval 1.9-7.1) in Mozambique and 25.3% (17.9-33.8) in Eswatini. The proportion of pretreatment NNRTI resistance attributable to unregulated antiretroviral use ranged from 6% (2-14) in Eswatini to 64% (26-85) in Mozambique. The fragility index was low in Botswana (0.01; 0.0-0.11) but high in Namibia (0.48; 0.16-10.17), Eswatini (0.64; 0.23-11.8) and South Africa (1.21; 0.83-9.84). The combination of high fragility of ART programmes and high ART coverage levels was associated with a sharp increase in pretreatment NNRTI resistance.

CONCLUSIONS

This comparison of nine countries shows that pretreatment NNRTI resistance can be controlled despite high ART coverage levels. This was the case in Botswana, Mozambique, and Zambia, most likely because of better HIV care delivery, including rapid switching to second-line ART of patients failing first-line ART.

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Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Infectious Diseases
04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Medical Virology
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Infectious Diseases
Language:English
Date:7 October 2021
Deposited On:17 Dec 2021 19:06
Last Modified:26 Jun 2024 01:46
Publisher:BioMed Central
ISSN:1471-2334
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:PubMed ID. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1186/s12879-021-06757-6
Related URLs:https://www.zora.uzh.ch/id/eprint/212732/
PubMed ID:34620119
  • Content: Published Version
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)