Persistent HIV RNA shedding in semen despite effective antiretroviral therapy
ABSTRACT Effective antiretroviral therapy (ART) may reduce HIV sexual transmission by lowering genital HIV levels. A prospective study of men starting ART (n = 25) demonstrated rapid, substantial reductions in semen HIV RNA. However, despite an undetectable blood viral load, isolated semen HIV shedding was detected at more than one visit in 12 of 25 (48%) participants, with semen HIV RNA levels exceeding 5000 copies/ml in four of 25 (16%). Isolates were drug-sensitive, and this phenomenon was not associated with semen drug levels or regimen.
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ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Antiretroviral drugs have been shown to reduce risk of mother-to-child transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and are also widely used for post-exposure prophylaxis for parenteral and sexual exposures. Sexual transmission may be lower in couples in which one partner is infected with HIV and the other is not and the infected partner is on antiretroviral therapy (ART). OBJECTIVES: To determine if ART use in an HIV-infected member of an HIV-discordant couple is associated with lower risk of HIV transmission to the uninfected partner compared to untreated discordant couples. SEARCH METHODS: We used standard Cochrane methods to search electronic databases and conference proceedings with relevant search terms without limits to language. SELECTION CRITERIA: Randomised controlled trials (RCT), cohort studies and case-control studies of HIV-discordant couples in which the HIV-infected member of the couple was being treated or not treated with ART DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Abstracts of all trials identified by electronic or bibliographic scanning were examined independently by two authors. We initially identified 3,833 references and examined 87 in detail for study eligibility. Data were abstracted independently using a standardised abstraction form. MAIN RESULTS: One RCT and nine observational studies were included in the review. These ten studies identified 2,112 episodes of HIV transmission, 1,016 among treated couples and 1,096 among untreated couples. The rate ratio for the single randomised controlled trial was 0.04 [95% CI 0.00, 0.27]. All index partners in this study had CD4 cell counts at baseline of 350-550 cells/µL. Similarly, the summary rate ratio for the nine observational studies was 0.58 [95% CI 0.35, 0.96], with substantial heterogeneity (I(2)=64%). After excluding two studies with inadequate person-time data, we estimated a summary rate ratio of 0.36 [95% CI 0.17, 0.75] with substantial heterogeneity (I(2)=62%). We also performed subgroup analyses among the observational studies to see if the effect of ART on prevention of HIV differed by the index partner's CD4 cell count. Among couples in which the infected partner had ≥350 CD4 cells/µL, we estimated a rate ratio of 0.12 [95% CI 0.01, 1.99]. In this subgroup, there were 247 transmissions in untreated couples and 30 in treated couples. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: ART is a potent intervention for prevention of HIV in discordant couples in which the index partner has ≤550 CD4 cells/µL. A recent multicentre RCT confirms the suspected benefit seen in earlier observational studies and reported in more recent ones. Questions remain about durability of protection, the balance of benefits and adverse events associated with earlier therapy, long-term adherence and transmission of ART-resistant strains to partners. Resource limitations and implementation challenges must also be addressed.Counselling, support, and follow up, as well as mutual disclosure, may have a role in supporting adherence, so programmes should be designed with these components. In addition to ART provision, the operational aspects of delivering such programmes must be considered. Update of: Antiretroviral therapy for prevention of HIV transmission in HIV-discordant couples. [Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2011]Cochrane database of systematic reviews (Online) 04/2013; CD009153. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD009153.pub3 · 5.70 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission to the female partner, or potential offspring of an HIV-1 infected man can be reduced using semen decontamination procedures before assisted reproductive treatment (ART). The objective of this study was to determine the efficiency of decontaminating semen samples (n = 186) from 95 HIV-1 sero-positive patients. Aliquots of neat semen were submitted for viral validation by qualitative and quantitative polymerase chain reaction. Semen samples were processed by density gradient centrifugation in combination with a ProInsert™ tube after which aliquots of the processed sperm samples were analysed for the presence of HIV-1. Fifty-four percent of all tested neat semen samples tested positive for HIV-1 DNA, RNA or both (13.4%, 11.3% and 29.0%, respectively). From a total of 103 processed sperm samples that were submitted for viral validation, two samples tested positive for HIV-1 DNA and none for RNA. In conclusion, semen processing with the ProInsert™ followed by viral validation of processed sperm samples should be carried out when providing ART to couples where the male partner is HIV-1 sero-positive. Copyright © 2014 Reproductive Healthcare Ltd. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.Reproductive biomedicine online 12/2014; 30(3). DOI:10.1016/j.rbmo.2014.11.008 · 2.98 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) may be transmitted through either cell-free virions or leukocytes harboring intracellular HIV in bodily fluids. In recent years, the early initiation of combination antiretroviral therapy leading to virological suppression has resulted in decreased HIV transmission to uninfected partners. Additionally, the efficacy of primary chemoprophylaxis with oral or topical antiretroviral regimens containing tenofovir (with or without emtricitabine) has been demonstrated. However, the efficacy of these approaches may be compromised by suboptimal adherence, decreased drug concentrations in mucosal compartments in women, and genital inflammation. Furthermore, in vitro studies on the effects of tenofovir on cell-associated HIV transmission have produced conflicting results. Preclinical studies suggest that combination preventive approaches may be most effective in stopping the transmission of HIV after mucosal exposure. Since the development of antibodies were found to correlate with protection in the only effective HIV vaccine trial, the administration of preformed mucosal and systemic antibodies may inform the development of safe and effective antibody-based oral, topical, and/or systemic preexposure prophylaxis agents and provide guidance in the development of HIV vaccines that effectively block cell-associated HIV transmission. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Infectious Diseases Society of America. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: email@example.com.The Journal of Infectious Diseases 12/2014; 210(suppl 3):S674-S680. DOI:10.1093/infdis/jiu398 · 5.78 Impact Factor