Equal plasma viral loads predict a similar rate of CD4+ T cell decline in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1- and HIV-2-infected individuals from Senegal, West Africa

J Infect Dis. 2002 Apr 1;185(7):905-14. doi: 10.1086/339295. Epub 2002 Mar 19.


Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 2 infection is characterized by slower disease progression to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome than results from HIV-1 infection. To better understand the biological factors underlying the different natural histories of infection with these 2 retroviruses, we examined the relationship between HIV RNA and DNA levels and the rate of CD4(+) T cell decline among 472 HIV-1- and 114 HIV-2-infected individuals from Senegal. The annual rate of CD4(+) T cell decline in the HIV-2 cohort was approximately one-fourth that seen in the HIV-1 cohort. However, when the analysis was adjusted for baseline plasma HIV RNA level, the rates of CD4(+) T cell decline per year for the HIV-1 and HIV-2 cohorts were similar (a rate increase of approximately 4% per year for each increase in viral load of 1 log(10) copies/mL). Therefore, plasma HIV load is predictive of the rate of CD4(+) T cell decline over time, and the correlation between viral load and the rate of decline appears to be similar among all HIV-infected individuals, regardless of whether they harbor HIV-1 or HIV-2.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count*
  • DNA, Viral / blood
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / immunology*
  • HIV Infections / virology
  • HIV-1 / physiology*
  • HIV-2 / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • RNA, Viral / blood
  • Senegal
  • Viral Load*
  • Viremia / virology


  • DNA, Viral
  • RNA, Viral