Purpose of review Phylogenetic analysis can identify transmission networks by clustering genetically related HIV genotypes that are routinely collected. In this study, we will review phylogenetic insights gained on transmission of HIV and phylogenetically optimized HIV prevention strategies. Recent findings Phylogenetic analysis reports that HIV transmission varies by geographical region and by route of transmission. In high-income countries, HIV is predominantly transmitted between recently infected MSM who live in the same country. In rural Uganda, transmission of HIV is frequently between different communities. Age-discrepant transmission has been reported across the world. Four studies have used phylogenetic optimization of HIV prevention. Three studies predict that immediate treatment after diagnosis would have prevented 19-42% of infections, and that preexposure prophylaxis would have prevented 66% of infections. One phylogenetic study guided a public health response to an actively ongoing HIV outbreak. Phylogenetic clustering requires a dense sample of patients and small time-gaps between infection and diagnosis. Summary Phylogenetic analysis can be an important tool to identify a local strategy that prevents most infections. Future studies that use phylogenetic analysis for optimizing HIV prevention strategies should also include cost-effectiveness so that the most cost-effective prevention method is identified.

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Keywords HIV prevention, HIV transmission, phylogenetic analysis, preexposure prophylaxis, treatment as prevention
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1097/COH.0000000000000443, hdl.handle.net/1765/104915
Journal Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS
van de Vijver, D.A.M.C, & Boucher, C.A.B. (2018). Insights on transmission of HIV from phylogenetic analysis to locally optimize HIV prevention strategies. Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS (Vol. 13, pp. 95–101). doi:10.1097/COH.0000000000000443