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CCR5 results, what they mean.

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  • CCR5 results, what they mean.

    Just got my CCR5 results and I'm wondering what they mean.

    CCR5 Normal/Normal.

  • #2
    The test is intended by FTDNA to be used as an indicator of European ancestry, LOL. Yup, uh-huh. But someone had to mention that. 15% of people of European ancestry (or slightly less) have one copy of the CCR5 delta 32 allele, and 1% have two copies. If you do have a copy of the CCR5 delta 32, you know that, for instance, not all of your ancestors were American Indian, Chinese, nor from Africa. If you have two copies of teh CCRT delta 32 gene, you pretty much know the same thing, because like with all autosomal genes, you can't attach either allele to any particular line of ancestry.

    The frequency and distribution of the allele suggests that it first appeared in Scandinavia, so a copy of the allele could be a sign of an ancestral line that once lived in Scandinavia, however long ago.

    I am pretty sure that normal - normal means you have no copies of this mutation. There are other mutations to the CCR5 gene, and several other cytokine genes involved in infection by the HIV virus and various pox viruses.

    Research has found it unlikley that this gene actually played much of a role in resistance to the plague. That was initially thought because the allele, being very common, was found by coincidence in descendants of people in a small village who'd survived the plague. Allele was actually a little more common in Neolithic Europe. The chemokines and their receptors don't play any known role in bacterial infections, except to activate immune cells, perhaps. Actual research found that the ccr5 delta 32 allele gives very slight resistance to HIV.

    HIV and the few pox viruses that can still be studied attach to chemokine receptors on cells in order to infect cells, and they also often have the ability to turn of the chemokines themselves, which both attach to the receptors the viruses need to attach to, and help turn on the immune system to fight the virus.

    The predominant strain of HIV in the U.S. needs to attach to the CCR5 receptor in order to infect cells, and cannot infect human cells if they have no functioning CCR5 receptors. People with the delta 32 allele do not have functioning CCR5 receptors.

    FTDNA warns vaguely against taking the test results for medical advice. In this case I think more specific warnings are in order. Some HIV strains do not need the CCR5 receptor to infect human cells.

    When I researched it, I found that several HIV strains common in Africa can attach to several other chemokine receptors besides the CCR5 receptor, and are thus able to infect people who don't have the CCR5 receptor. Those strains have begun to show up in the U.S., predominantly among African immigrants, but their spread is a matter of time - like, maybe five minutes? One strain, which attacks both teh CCR5 receptor and a different receptor, is particularly virulent. It kills quickly. Mutations to teh genes for teh CCR5 receptor or the other receptor slow it down.

    There are also other genes for resistance to HIV, including an allele taht affects teh other main targeted chemokine receptor by teh strains that cvan attack it, and other mutations to the CCR5 gene (one of which actually causes people to die of HIV SOONER, and the other causes them to die later). Some of those genes are found mainly in Africans, Afro-Americans, and in some cases and East Asians. It is possible to get tested for several of tehse alleles in addition to the CCR5 delta 32 mutation - but not at FTDNA.

    But there is good news for you. There are diseases with which the delta 32 allele puts one at a disadvantage, and you may possibly be at greater risk for them. I can't remember all of tehm offhand, but one of them is the West Nile virus. You're no more likely to get sick with that than the general population. If you practice safe sex but live where tehre are mosquitos...

    I got the test done because my failure of smallpox vaccinations to take piqued my curiosity. However, some people have reported that they have had smallpox vaccinations never take and have no CCR5 delta 32 alleles. The monkey pox (I think), or is it rabbit pox, attacks three chemokine receptors, of which CCR5 is one, so a number of genes could contribute resistance. What is more, not having the CCR5 delta 32 mutation does not mean that you don't have a different CCR5 mutation that affects your resistance to these viruses.

    Studies of the history of the CCR5 delta 32 mutation mention that its incidence in Europe is not inconsistent with its considerable variation. The human immune system is high variable by design in order to increase the odds of our species surviving any pandemic.

    Dora Smith


    • #3
      I can tell you that I've been vaccinated twice for smallpox and neither vaccine "took". I can also tell you that both my parents have never been vaccinated for influenza and neither of my parents ever get influenza, both parents are in their late 70's, early 80's in age and still very healthy. Also, I never get influenza. A few years back I was infected with WNV, had a 104F fever for about 1 1/2 days and that was about it. I was fine after that. Even the common cold doesn't survive very long inside me. It's usually gone in about 2 days. The first blood test I was able to trace for myself using my medical records was at age 8. The one distinctive feature of the blood test was a white blood count of 15,000. To this day, I always have an abnormally high white blood count with nothing else seemingly wrong. I've been told that many Europeans have naturally high white blood counts but I've never been offered an explanation as to why.


      • #4
        Originally posted by villandra

        But there is good news for you. There are diseases with which the delta 32 allele puts one at a disadvantage, and you may possibly be at greater risk for them. ....
        Dora Smith
        This is GOOD NEWS?