Objective:To evaluate the effect of foscarnet on HIV-1 replication in vivo.
Patients and Methods:Seventeen AIDS patients with cytomegalovirus (CMV), herpes simplex virus (HSV), varicella-zoster virus (VZV) infection, Kaposi's sarcoma (KS), or a combination of these were treated with foscarnet. HIV RNA quantification (bDNA 2.0, Chiron, Emeryville, CA, U.S.A.), CMV pp65 antigenemia (Argene Biosoft, Varilhes, France), and CMV viremia were determined before and during therapy.
Results:Four patients had CMV retinitis (1 with KS), 2 patients had CMV pneumonia (1 with KS), 1 patient had CMV cholecystitis, 2 patients had VZV infection (1 with KS), 1 patient had HSV-2 infection, and 7 patients had KS alone. The decrease in HIV-1 load was -0.73 ± 0.39 log copies/ml (p = 2.10-6) after 3 days of treatment and -1.15 ± 0.49 log copies/ml (p < 10-7) after 10 days of treatment, compared with day 0. Furthermore, reduction of HIV-1 plasma load during foscarnet therapy did not depend on the presence or absence of CMV disease or on a positive pp65 antigenemia at day 0.
Conclusion:We observed decreased HIV-1 plasma load in all patients treated with foscarnet, regardless of presence or absence of clinical or biologic CMV infection. This decrease supports the proposition that foscarnet anti-HIV-1 activity may be of clinical importance.
Address correspondence and reprint requests to J. L. Pellegrin, Service de Médecine Interne, Hôpital du Haut-Lévêque, 33 604 Pessac, France.
Manuscript received April 7, 1997; accepted November 20, 1997.
© Lippincott-Raven Publishers.