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Psoriasis
Oct 31, 2008

Can psoriasis increase with HIV? Or is it more likely caused by the stress accompanied by the virus? Ive heard increased CD8 levels can cause psoriasis, possibly overcompensating for the loss of CD4? Thanks.

Response from Dr. McGowan

It is true that psoriasis can paradoxically worsen with advancing HIV infection. Recent data suggests, as you describe in your question, that psoriasis is driven by memory CD8 T cells. During the course of HIV infection CD4 T cell counts drop more relative to CD8 cell counts, and Memory CD8 T cells tend to be preserved. This would favor worsening psoriasis with more advanced HIV disease. Keeping the immune system in balance by treating HIV would be expected to help control psoriasis better.

Best, Joe


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