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Spontaneous Control of HIV Replication, but not HAART-Induced Viral Suppression, Is Associated With Lower Activation of Immune Cells

Taborda, Natalia A. MSc; Rugeles, María T. MSc, DSc; Montoya, Carlos J. MD, MSc, DSc

JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes: August 1st, 2014 - Volume 66 - Issue 4 - p 365–369
doi: 10.1097/QAI.0000000000000162
Brief Report: Basic and Translational Science

Abstract: HIV replication control is important to reduce AIDS progression. We determined frequency and activation status of immune cells in spontaneous HIV controllers vs. individuals with highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-controlled viral load. HIV controllers exhibited significantly higher frequency of CD4+ T cells and myeloid dendritic cells compared with HAART-controlled viral load. Additionally, HIV controllers have a significantly lower percentage of cells expressing activation markers on CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, myeloid dendritic cells, and natural killer cells. These findings suggest that during HIV infection, conservation of a normal frequency and physiological range of immune activation is associated with spontaneous, but not HAART-induced, control of viral replication.

Grupo Inmunovirología, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Antioquia UdeA, Medellín, Colombia.

Correspondence to: María T. Rugeles, MSc, DSc, Grupo Inmunovirología, Facultad de Medicina, Universidad de Antioquia UdeA, Calle 70 No. 52-21, Medellín, Colombia (e-mail:

Supported by CODI-Universidad de Antioquia Convocatoria Mediana Cuantía 2011; Estrategia para Sostenibilidad de Grupos 2013–2014 Universidad de Antioquia; N.A.T. received a scholarship from Colciencias “Convocatoria Nacional 511 para el estudio de Doctorado en Colombia año 2010.”

The authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

Received April 03, 2014

Accepted April 03, 2014

© 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins