Papasavvas, E. et al. Delayed loss of control of plasma lipopolysaccharide levels after therapy interruption in chronically HIV-1-infected patients. AIDS 23, 369-375

The Wistar Institute, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104, USA.
AIDS (London, England) (Impact Factor: 5.55). 01/2009; 23(3):369-75. DOI: 10.1097/QAD.0b013e32831e9c76
Source: PubMed


Increased circulating levels of lipopolysaccharide (LPS) have been demonstrated in HIV-1-infected progressors. We investigated the effect of antiretroviral therapy (ART) interruptions on plasma LPS levels.
Overall, 77 individuals participated in this study (51 HIV-positive and 26 healthy). Ten out of 51 HIV-positive participants were viremic ART-naive patients and 41 out of 51 were chronically suppressed patients on ART (three or more drugs, CD4 cell count more than 400 cells/microl, HIV-1 RNA less than 500 copies/ml for more than 8 months, less than 50 copies/ml at recruitment) undergoing therapy interruption. The limulus amebocyte assay was used to measure plasma LPS levels; enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay to measure plasma levels of endotoxin-core antibodies (EndoCAb), soluble (s)CD14, LPS-binding protein and IFN-alpha; immunoblotting to measure plasma gelsolin levels; and same day whole blood flow cytometry to measure levels of T-cell-activation markers (CD8/CD38, CD8/HLA-DR and CD3/CD95).
Increases in viremia and T-cell-activation markers were observed during therapy interruptions. During short-term therapy interruptions of less than 12 weeks, no change in LPS levels was found, whereas negative associations between viral load and LPS levels (Spearman's Rho = -0.612, P = 0.0152), viral load and EndoCAb change (DeltaEndoCAb, correlation = -0.502, P = 0.0204), and between DeltaLPS and DeltaEndoCAb (correlation = -0.851, P = 0.0073) were observed. In contrast, increased LPS (P = 0.0171) and sCD14 (P < 0.0001) levels were observed during long-term therapy interruption of more than 12 weeks compared with levels during ART, together with no association between LPS and viral load or EndoCAb. No association between immune activation and LPS was evident at any time point.
Increased plasma LPS levels were observed only after more than 12 weeks of ART interruption, despite presence of LPS-controlling host mechanisms.

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    • "Wallet et al. (Wallet et al. 2010) showed in paediatric patients that microbial translocation is associated with persistent monocyte/macrophage activation, independently of viral replication or T cell activation. Papasavvas et al. (Papasavvas et al. 2009 "
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    ABSTRACT: Contributory factors to HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND) have been shown to include age, co-morbid infections, medication toxicity, virological, genetic and vascular mechanisms, as well as microbial translocation of lipopolysaccharide (LPS), which is suspected to trigger monocyte activation and increase trafficking of infected cells into the brain. In this study, our aim was to assess the degree of neurocognitive impairment in a group of randomly selected HIV-infected patients and investigate potential risk factors, including LPS plasma levels. Furthermore, we evaluated the relevance of LPS as a potential marker for screening patients with mild neurocognitive impairment. LPS plasma levels were compared among patients with HAND and those with no HAND. As LPS has also been shown to be elevated in hepatitis C co-infection, the analysis was stratified according to the presence or not of hepatitis C virus (HCV) co-infection. Differences between groups were evaluated using chi-square tests and Kruskal-Wallis non-parametric tests. Stepwise logistic regression was performed to identify independent risk factors for HAND in the subgroups of HCV-positive and negative patients. A p value <0.05 was considered significant. Analyses were conducted using SPSS® software. From December 2007 to July 2009, 179 patients were tested (mean age 44, 73 % male, 87 % on treatment, 30 % HCV co-infected, median CD4 504/ml and 67 % with viral load below 40 copies/ml). HAND was identified in 40/179 patients (22 %), the majority displaying asymptomatic neurocognitive impairment or mild neurocognitive disorder. Univariate analysis showed that age, illicit drug use, hepatitis C co-infection, prior AIDS-defining events, CD4/CD8 ratio and LPS plasma levels were significantly associated with HAND. The median LPS level was 98.2 pg/ml in the non-HAND group versus 116.1 pg/ml in the HAND group (p < 0.014). No differences were found in LPS values between subgroups of impairment. There was a clear association between LPS levels and HAND in the HCV-positive group (p = 0.036), while there was none in the HCV-negative group (p = 0.502). No difference in degree of hepatic fibrosis was found between the HAND and non-HAND groups. In conclusion, LPS levels were associated with HAND in the HCV-positive group, while, in the HCV-negative group, age and pro-viral DNA were the only variables independently associated with HAND. There was no difference in degree of liver disease as predicted by score of fibrosis between HAND and non-HAND groups. The role of HCV co-infection and higher LPS levels in the pathogenesis of HAND in patients with viral suppression on treatment requires further investigation.
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    • "Moreover, two recent works did not show any relationship between microbial translocation and T-cell immune activation, in HIV-infected children on successful cART for Pilakka-Kanthikeel et al. [16] and in patients interrupting treatment for Papasavvas et al. [17]. "
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