Originally posted by AThousandYoung
I used to be a volunteer massage therapist at an AIDS patient center in north Oakland. One of my clients talked about how he had unprotected sex with his boyfriend because the boyfriend was "of pure Aryan stock and therefore immune".
Maybe there was something behind that ridiculous story after all.
The mutation prevents a molecule ca ...[text shortened]... descent almost never carry it.
The CCR5 delta 32 (D32) mutation has been known for well over a decade now.
See original paper Dragic et al. HIV-1 entry into CD4+ cells is mediated by the chemokine receptor CC-CKR-5. Nature. 1996 Jun 20;381(6584):667-73.
CCR5 D32 is actually absent from native African, American Indian, and East Asian ethnic groups. The mutation is found principally in Europe and western Asia, with higher frequencies generally in the north. Homozygous carriers of the D32 mutation are resistant to HIV-1 infection because the mutation prevents functional expression of the CCR5 chemokine receptor normally used by HIV-1 to enter CD4+ T cells. HIV has emerged only recently, but population genetic data strongly suggest D32 has been under intense selection for much of its evolutionary history. Much work is going into designing drugs to "phenocopy" the CCR5 D32 mutation by antagonising normal receptor function. I think the radiation treatment is the key but the mortality rate of one-third is pretty grim and I think if I live in the west I would keep taking the HAART drugs. Very interesting stuff. Other resistance alleles to HIV-1 in humans are known, such as CCR2-64I and SDF1-3'A.