Title: Spatiotemporal and demographic history of the HIV-1 circulating recombinant form CRF31_BC in Brazil
Authors: Fritsch HM, Almeida SEM, Pinto AR, Graf T.
Journal: Infect Genet Evol.,61:113-118 (2018)


CRF31_BC is an HIVs-1 recombinant form very prevalent in the southernmost capital city of Brazil, Porto Alegre. Recent studies have been describing a growing number of cases of infection by CRF31_BC in other Brazilian cities and countries, suggesting a process of expansion of this strain. Aiming to describe the city of origin, dispersion routes and demographic history of CRF31_BC, this study analyzed all HIV-1 CRF31_BC and Brazilian BC mosaic publicly available sequences. CRF31_BC classification was performed by bootscanning and tree reconstruction methods. Bayesian phylogeographic and phylodynamic model approaches were used to reconstruct the spatiotemporal and demographic history of 95 sequences identified as CRF31_BC-like. Porto Alegre was estimated to be the origin and center of the dispersion of the CRF31_BC for most of the analyzed locations. However, some viral transitions independent from Porto Alegre were observed in other cities from the Rio Grande do Sul state and also in other Brazilian states. The estimated CRF31_BC epidemic growth rate was similar to subtype C and B in Brazil. Our findings suggest that CRF31_BC, although mostly prevalent in south region, is circulating nation-wide with some localities presenting autochthonous transmissions.