Apolipoprotein-1 risk variants and associated kidney phenotypes in an adult HIV cohort in Nigeria.


HIV-positive adults are at risk for various kidney diseases, and apolipoprotein 1 (APOL1) high-risk genotypes increase this risk. This study aimed to determine the prevalence and ethnic distribution of APOL1 risk genotypes among a cohort of HIV-positive Nigerian adults and explore the relationship between APOL1 risk variant status with albuminuria and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR). We conducted a cross-sectional study among 2 458 persons living with HIV who attended an HIV clinic in northern Nigeria and had received antiretroviral therapy for a minimum of six months. We collected two urine samples four-eight weeks apart to measure albumin excretion, and blood samples to measure eGFR and determine APOL1 genotype. The frequency of APOL1 high-risk genotype was 6.2%, which varied by ethnic group: Hausa/Fulani (2.1%), Igbo (49.1%), and Yoruba (14.5%). The prevalence of microalbuminuria (urine/albumin creatinine ratio 30- 300 mg/g) was 37%, and prevalence of macroalbuminuria (urine/albumin creatinine ratio over 300 mg/g) was 3%. The odds of microalbuminuria and macroalbuminuria were higher for participants with the APOL1 high-risk genotype compared to those carrying the low-risk genotype ([adjusted odds ratio 1.97, 95% confidence interval 1.37-2.82] and [3.96, 1.95-8.02] respectively). APOL1 high-risk genotype participants were at higher risk of having both an eGFR under 60 ml/min/1.73m and urine/albumin creatinine ratio over 300 mg/g (5.56, 1.57-19.69). Thus, we found a high proportion of HIV-positive, antiretroviral therapy-experienced, and largely virologically suppressed adults had microalbuminuria. Hence, although the high-risk APOL1 genotype was less prevalent than expected, it was strongly associated with some level of albuminuria.