To compare the effect of highly active antiretroviral therapy on immune reconstitution in subjects with acute and chronic HIV-1 infection.
Prospective study including 58 treatment-naive subjects who commenced indinavir or nelfinavir and two nucleosides during primary (PHI; n = 28) or chronic HIV-1 infection (CHI; n = 30).
Naive (CD45RA+ 62L+), memory (CD45RA-) and activated (CD38+ HLA-DR+) T cell subsets were quantified at 1-2 monthly time intervals using 4-colour flow cytometry.
At 1 year, HIV-1 RNA declined in both cohorts to undetectable levels (< 50 copies/ml), while median CD4 lymphocyte count increased from 470 to 758 x 10(6) cells/l in PHI and from 204 to 310 x 10(6) cells/l in CHI, reaching > 500 x 10(6) cells/l in 93% of PHI, but only in 37% of CHI subjects (P < 0.001). Naive CD4 lymphocytes increased from 106 to 176 x 10(6) cells/l in PHI and from 41 to 44 x 10(6) cells/l in CHI (PHI versus CHI at 12 months: P = 0.003), while memory cells rose from 368 to 573 x 10(6) cells/l in PHI and from 148 to 223 x 10(6) cells/l in CHI (P < 0.001). Early increases (< 3 months) of CD4 lymphocytes were larger in subjects with PHI, consisting of naive CD45RA+ CD62L+ as well as memory CD45RA- CD62L+ cells (P = 0.001). CD4 activation declined from 5 to 2% in PHI and from 13 to 6% in CHI (P = 0.001), while CD8 cell activation was reduced from 33 to 15% in PHI and from 42 to 19% in CHI (P = 0.02).
Immune reconstitution was more complete, occurred earlier and comprised both naive and memory CD4 T lymphocytes in subjects who commenced antiretroviral therapy during primary HIV-1 infection.
"Trends in CD4 count (slope) was calculated by linear regression with the values at time T, before T, and after T, and was expressed as changes of cells per microliter (μL) per year. The HIV VL was related to the CD4 count slope at time T. Previous studies reported a two-phase CD4 count response, demonstrated as a rapid increase (a high CD4 count slope) in the first several months after treatment initiation and followed by slower increase (a smaller slope compared to the initial several months)[11-14]. Preliminary analyses in eligible TAHOD patients showed that the mean CD4 count slope was significantly higher in the first 6 months after cART initiation than in the period afterwards (179 vs. 44 cells/μL per year, p < 0.001). The CD4 slopes were therefore calculated from CD4 counts measured 6 months after cART initiation. "
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The aim of this study was to examine the relationship between trends in CD4 counts (slope) and HIV viral load (VL) after initiation of combination antiretroviral treatment (cART) in Asian patients in The TREAT Asia HIV Observational Database (TAHOD).
Treatment-naive HIV-infected patients who started cART with three or more and had three or more CD4 count and HIV VL tests were included. CD4 count slopes were expressed as changes of cells per microliter per year. Predictors of CD4 count slopes from 6 months after initiation were assessed by random-effects linear regression models.
A total of 1676 patients (74% male) were included. The median time on cART was 4.2 years (IQR 2.5-5.8 years). In the final model, CD4 count slope was associated with age, concurrent HIV VL and CD4 count, disease stage, hepatitis B or C co-infection, and time since cART initiation. CD4 count continues to increase with HIV VL up to 20,000 copies/mL during 6-12 months after cART initiation. However, the HIV VL has to be controlled below 5,000, 4,000 and 500 copies/mL for the CD4 count slope to remain above 20 cells/microliter per year during 12-18, 18-24, and beyond 24 months after cART initiation.
After cART initiation, CD4 counts continued to increase even when the concurrent HIV VL was detectable. However, HIV VL needed to be controlled at a lower level to maintain a positive CD4 count slope when cART continues. The effect on long-term outcomes through the possible development of HIV drug resistance remains uncertain.
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