Advertisement
The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
  
  • Email Email
  • Printable Single-Page Print-Friendly
  • Glossary Glossary

Press Release

Study Finds Genetic Influence on Pace of HIV/AIDS Progression

October 22, 2007


What

Viral load -- the amount of virus in the blood of an HIV-infected person -- has long been viewed as the chief indicator of how quickly someone infected with HIV infection progresses to AIDS. New data published in Nature Immunology builds on previous work that suggests that several other factors in addition to viral load significantly contribute to disease progression rates.

Researchers led by Sunil Ahuja, M.D., of the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio, examined genetic information from more than 3,500 HIV-1 infected and uninfected individuals. They found that individuals who had specific combinations of two genes -- CCR5, which helps facilitate HIV entry into the cell, and CCL3L1, an immune response gene -- were much more likely to have reduced immune responses and a greater decline in CD4 T cells, two hallmarks of progressive HIV disease. Further, the researchers found that in HIV-infected subjects, viral load contributed only 9 percent to the variability in rate of progression to AIDS; variations in CCR5 and CCL3L1 combined accounted for 6 percent variability in AIDS progression rates.

Advertisement
The findings may have implications for the care of HIV-infected individuals in terms of being able to more effectively predict the course of HIV disease. With further research, this work may lead to additional markers, which along with viral load, may serve as indicators of HIV progression. The study was funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes of Health.


Article

"CCL3L1 and CCR5 influence cell-mediated immunity and affect HIV-AIDS pathogenesis via viral entry-independent mechanisms" by Matthew J. Dolan et al. Nature Immunology (Published online Sunday, October 21, 2007). DOI: 10.1038/ni1521 (2007).


Spokespersons

Anthony S. Fauci, M.D., NIAID Director, and Opendra Sharma, Ph.D., a program officer in NIAID's Division of AIDS Pathogenesis and Basic Research Branch, are available to comment on this article.


Contact

To schedule interviews, contact the NIAID News and Public Information Branch, (301) 402-1663, http://www.niaid.nih.gov.



  
  • Email Email
  • Printable Single-Page Print-Friendly
  • Glossary Glossary

 
See Also
More on Gene Therapy for HIV/AIDS

Tools
 

Advertisement