Back to overview

The IFNL3/4 ΔG variant increases susceptibility to cytomegalovirus retinitis among HIV-infected patients.

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Author Bibert Stéphanie, Wojtowicz Agnieszka, Taffé Patrick, Manuel Oriol, Bernasconi Enos, Furrer Hansjakob, Günthard Huldrych F, Hoffmann Matthias, Kaiser Laurent, Osthoff Michael, Cavassini Matthias, Bochud Pierre-Yves, Swiss HIV Cohort Study,
Project Swiss HIV Cohort Study (SHCS)
Show all

Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal AIDS (London, England)
Volume (Issue) 28(13)
Page(s) 1885 - 9
Title of proceedings AIDS (London, England)
DOI 10.1097/qad.0000000000000379

Open Access

Type of Open Access Repository (Green Open Access)


Cytomegalovirus (CMV) retinitis is a major cause of visual impairment and blindness among patients with uncontrolled HIV infections. Whereas polymorphisms in interferon-lambda 3 (IFNL3, previously named IL28B) strongly influence the clinical course of hepatitis C, few studies examined the role of such polymorphisms in infections due to viruses other than hepatitis C virus. To analyze the association of newly identified IFNL3/4 variant rs368234815 with susceptibility to CMV-associated retinitis in a cohort of HIV-infected patients. This retrospective longitudinal study included 4884 white patients from the Swiss HIV Cohort Study, among whom 1134 were at risk to develop CMV retinitis (CD4 nadir < 00 /μl and positive CMV serology). The association of CMV-associated retinitis with rs368234815 was assessed by cumulative incidence curves and multivariate Cox regression models, using the estimated date of HIV infection as a starting point, with censoring at death and/or lost follow-up. A total of 40 individuals among 1134 patients at risk developed CMV retinitis. The minor allele of rs368234815 was associated with a higher risk of CMV retinitis (log-rank test P = 0.007, recessive mode of inheritance). The association was still significant in a multivariate Cox regression model (hazard ratio 2.31, 95% confidence interval 1.09-4.92, P = 0.03), after adjustment for CD4 nadir and slope, HAART and HIV-risk groups. We reported for the first time an association between an IFNL3/4 polymorphism and susceptibility to AIDS-related CMV retinitis. IFNL3/4 may influence immunity against viruses other than HCV.