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Medical News

Metabolic Syndrome May Be An HIV Risk

January 23, 2007

Many HIV patients have the same two characteristics of metabolic syndrome and could be at risk for zinc deficiency, according to researchers in two new reports.

Denise Jacobson of Tufts University School of Medicine, along with Drs. Christine Wanke and Sherwood Gorbach, found that almost one-fourth of the HIV patients they studied had metabolic syndrome; this, however, was still a lower incidence rate than in the general population. "Strikingly, 77 percent of people with metabolic syndrome in the study had the same two defining characteristics, low HDL cholesterol and hypertriglyceridemia," said Jacobson.

Gorbach said it appears that HIV viral load and metabolic syndrome are associated, since participants with both HIV and metabolic syndrome were likely to have a clinically relevant increase in viral load within six months of developing components of metabolic syndrome.

Using the same study population, Dr. Clara Jones and colleagues analyzed micronutrient levels of almost 300 HIV patients on drug therapy. Of those, 40 percent of men and 36 percent of women in the study had low zinc levels, Jones said, adding that researchers have thought for some time that low levels of micronutrients are associated with an increased viral load.

The reports, "Incidence of Metabolic Syndrome in a Cohort of HIV-Infected Adults and Prevalence Relative to the US Population (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey)" and "Micronutrient Levels and HIV Disease Status in HIV-Infected Patients on Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy in the Nutrition for Healthy Living Cohort," were published in The Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (2006;43(4):458-466 and 475-482).

Back to other news for January 23, 2007

Adapted from:
United Press International

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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
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