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Re: Inflammation Assays

Dec 28, 2008

Hi Dr. Holodniy, Regarding your question to my question regarding inflammatory problems related to HIV infections:

Regarding psoriatic arthritis, over fifteen years ago, I saw three different doctors and received several prescriptions, none of which seemed to help much. The problem seemed to diminish, though VERY slowly (over many years) on its own. Though it never went away completely. What seemed to start this flare-up was a very bad reaction to a flu vaccine.

Regarding psoriatic skin lesions, I received a prescription for betamethasone valerate (Beta-Val) cream, and it helps quite a bit.

More recently, my psoriatic arthritis seemed to get worse after a three year (HIV) drug break. During the break, my CD4+ T cells dipped well under 600 cells/mml. I'm self-prescribing vitamins for the problem. Occasional use of a vitamin product called D-Flame (NOW brand), which claims to be both a COX-2 & 5-LOX enzyme inhibitor, seems to help. Also, 1,600mg/day of green tea extract (EGCg) & 200 mcg/day Selenium between flare-ups seem to help.

I recently ran across the Journal of Experimental Medicine article on the Dangers of Restocking T cells, and wondered if these flare-ups were associated with my loss-recovery from initial HIV infection and later treatment interruption:

Perhaps the recent $220M grant, given to the NIH to study immune tolerance, will help us understand this problem.

One other thing... Several months ago, my psoriatic skin lesions, along with similar skin lesions in a co-worker, shut-down completely around the same time that another co-worker announced that his young son had come-down with German Measles. The internet is filled with reports of a connection between German Measles and auto-immune disorders. I wonder if the resolution of two person's psoriatic skin lesions was somehow related to a potential exposure to German Measles.


Response from Dr. Holodniy

You raise several interesting issues about concomitant inflammatory processes in someone with HIV infection. It is potentially a very complex interaction that is not well understood. On the one hand, inflammatory diseases could activate t cells causing increased t cell activation and HIV replication leading to increased CD4 infection and destruction; on the other hand, control of HIV infection through HIV treatment, could lead to immune system reconstitution and worsening of the underlying inflammatory process.

Difference between HIV impact and hereditary issues?

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