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29 April 2008

Determination of lamivudine-resistant variants of hepatitis B virus by denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis: a novel approach to monitoring drug resistance

Krzysztof Piotr BielawskiABCDEFG, Waleed Abu Al-SoudADE, Piotr StalkeBF, Urszula CharmuszkoBC, Torkel WadstromG

Med Sci Monit 2008; 14(5): CR281-285 :: ID: 855755

Abstract

Background
A DGGE-based assay for hepatitis B virus (HBV) drug-resistance monitoring was designed and checked for feasibility. It detects mutations within the YMDD motif related to lamivudine resistance.
Material and Method
The YMDD motif of HBV polymerase was amplified by the set of primers designed in this study. DGGE analysis of the amplicons was performed on 9% polyacrylamide gels containing a 20-40% gradient of urea plus formamide and electrophoresis was performed. DNA sequencing was performed using a standard protocol.
Results
Based on the DGGE pattern of previously sequenced HBV variants, a reference ladder consisting of bands was constructed within and near the YMDD motif of HBV with excellent resolution. The genotypes of all the fragments included in the ladder were confirmed by sequencing after DGGE analysis. The flexibility of DGGE was demonstrated by the ability to add more bands to the migration ladder when new variants were discovered during the analysis of patient specimens. Clinical samples from HBV-infected patients were also used to demonstrate the performance of this approach.
Conclusions
This preliminary feasibility study of HBV drug-resistance monitoring by means of DGGE shows the potential advantage of this approach for low-cost screening for viral drug resistance in clinical settings. The presented example can be extended to detect other mutations related to drug resistance in the HBV genome as well as other viruses.

Keywords: Lamivudine - pharmacology, Molecular Sequence Data, Hepatitis B - virology, Genotype, Genome, Viral, Gene Products, pol - metabolism, Electrophoresis, Feasibility Studies, Drug Resistance, Viral, Mutation, Base Sequence, Automation, Anti-HIV Agents - pharmacology, Amino Acid Motifs

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Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750
Medical Science Monitor eISSN: 1643-3750