Association between HIV Type 1-specific T cell responses and CD4+ T cell counts or CD4+:CD8+ T cell ratios in HIV Type 1 subtype B infection in China.
ABSTRACT CD4+ T cell counts and CD4+:CD8+ T cell ratios represent key determinants of HIV disease progression and infectivity. However, the relationship between the HIV-1-specific cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response and these determinants has not been elucidated for all HIV-1B and HIV-1C proteins. In the present study, virusspecific T cell responses to HIV-1B and HIV-1C proteins were analyzed with interferon gamma (IFN-gamma) enzyme- linked immunospot (ELISpot) assays using synthetic overlapping peptides corresponding to naturally occurring HIV-1B and HIV-1C consensus sequences. For Gag/Gag p24/Gag p17, a correlation between T cell responses and CD4+ T cell count in HIV-1 clade B and clade C was seen: elevated T cell response resulted in higher CD4+ T cell production. A statistically significant correlation between the Pol-specific T cell response and CD4+ T cell counts was also found in HIV-1 subtype C. For all HIV-1B and HIV-1C proteins, a correlation between the HIV-1-specific T cell response and CD4+:CD8+ T cell ratios was found for Tat and Pol proteins. CD4+ T cell counts in patients with Tat and/or Rev T cell response were higher than in patients without Tat and/or Rev T cell response. We suggest that this correlation within HIV-1B and HIV-1C Gag p24/Gag p17 responses makes the Gag p24/Gag p17 region a potential vaccine candidate and that HIV-1-specific CTL epitopes toward Pol are important in controlling HIV-1 infection; we emphasize that future vaccination strategies should include these early antigens, Tat and Rev.
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ABSTRACT: HIV-1 specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) have an important role as antiviral effector cells for controlling HIV-1 infection. To investigate CTL response during the early stage of HIV infection, we measured immunity-related factors including CD4+ T cell counts, CD8+ T cell counts, HIV-1 RNA viral loads and IFN-γ secretion according to CTL response in 78 selected primary HIV-1-infected Koreans. The CTL response was strongly induced by HIV-1 specific Gag and Nef peptides (p = 0.016) compared with induction by Tat or Env peptides. These results suggest that the major antiviral factors inducing strong HIV-specific CTL responses are associated with the Gag and Nef viral regions in primary HIV-1 infected Koreans. The relationship between viral load and CTL response showed varying correlations with time following HIV infection. CTL response was inversely correlated with viral loads at preseroconversion stage I (r = -0.224 to -0.33) and changed to a positive correlation at the preseroconversion stage II (r = 0.132 to 0.854). Finally, it changed to an inverse correlation again after seroconversion until a viral set point was established on serological profiling (r = -0.195 to -0.407). These findings demonstrate a dynamic correlation between viral load and subsequent CTL responses during early HIV infection.Virology Journal 01/2010; 7:239. · 2.09 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The quantitation of HIV viral load using an assay that measures the activity of reverse transcriptase (RT) may provide an alternative strategy for the monitoring of HIV viral load within resource-limited areas in China. Plasma viral load analyses of 215 samples from 87 patients infected with HIV were detected using the RT activity assay (ExaVir Load versions 2 and 3; Cavidi, Uppsala, Sweden) and RT polymerase chain reaction (PCR) (COBAS TaqMan 48, Amplink version 3.2; Roche Molecular Systems, Branchburg, NJ). The RT activity assay versions 3 (RT3) and 2 (RT2) could detect 95.3% and 86.9% of samples with measurable RNA by RT-PCR, respectively. A stronger correlation was observed between viral loads detected by RT3 and RT-PCR than between RT2 and RT-PCR (r = 0.95, P < 0.001, and r = 0.92, P < 0.001, respectively). The correlation between serial samples collected from 6 patients at 1, 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months after beginning triple combination antiretroviral therapy, using the 2 different methodologies, was also strong (r = 0.99, P < 0.001, for RT3 and RT-PCR, r = 0.98, P < 0.001, for RT2 and RT-PCR). The viral loads detected by RT activity assay were inversely correlated with CD4(+) T-cell counts. Reproducibility of the RT activity assay was assessed by testing 3 samples in triplicate by 3 different operators. Viral load testing using assays that measure HIV RT activity is an affordable, feasible, simple, and reliable alternative for HIV RNA viral load determination in laboratories in China and other developing countries.Diagnostic microbiology and infectious disease 11/2010; 68(3):208-13. · 2.45 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The characterization of HIV-1-specific T cell responses in people infected with locally circulating HIV-1 strain will facilitate the development of HIV-1 vaccine. Sixty intravenous drug users infected with HIV-1 circulating recombinant form 07_BC (CRF07_BC), which has been spreading rapidly in western China from north to south, were recruited from Xinjiang, China to assess the HIV-1-specific T cell responses at single peptide level with overlapping peptides (OLP) covering the whole concensus clades B and C proteome. The median of the total magnitude and total number of OLPs recognized by CTL responses were 10925 SFC/million PBMC and 25 OLPs, respectively, when tested by clade C peptides, which was significantly higher than when tested by clade B peptides. The immunodominant regions, which cover 14% (58/413) of the HIV-1 proteome, are widely distributed throughout the HIV-1 proteome except in Tat, Vpu and Pol-PR, with Gag, Pol-RT, Pol-Int and Nef being most frequently targeted. The subdominant epitopes are mostly located in p24, Nef, integrase, Vpr and Vif. Of the responses directed to clade C OLPs, 61.75% (972/1574) can be observed when tested with corresponding clade B OLPs. However, Pol-PR and Vpu tend to be targeted in the clade B sequence rather than the clade C sequence, which is in line with the recombinant pattern of CRF07_BC. Stronger and broader CTL responses in subjects with CD4 cell counts ranging from 200 to 400/mm3 were observed when compared to those with less than 200/mm3 or more than 400/mm3, though there have been no significant correlations identified between the accumulative CTL responses or overall breadth and CD4 cell count or plasma viral load. This is the first study conducted to comprehensively address T cell responses in Chinese subjects infected with HIV-1 CRF07_BC in which subtle differences in cross-reactivity were observed, though similar patterns of overall immune responses were demonstrated with clade B infected populations. The immunodominant regions identified in this population can facilitate future HIV-1 vaccine development in China.Retrovirology 02/2007; 4:62. · 4.77 Impact Factor