Certain immunological parameters (i.e. low CD4+ T cell numbers, high serum soluble CD8) have been described as prognostic factors for the progression of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection to later clinical stages. In the present study we have found in one hundred HIV-infected Spanish patients (81% drug abusers, 7% homosexuals, 6% heterosexuals, and 6% other or unknown risk groups) that CD11b+ peripheral blood mononuclear cells are increased in those with persistent lymphadenopathy as compared to other clinical stages (asymptomatic, AIDS-related complex and AIDS). Serum IgA was significantly increased in AIDS patients, and in patients at any other clinical stage who had concomitant infections (mainly mycobacterial and fungal). CD11b (an integrin with complement receptor functions) may thus be of clinical interest for the staging of HIV-infected patients, and reflect stage-selective immunological changes in mononuclear cell biology during HIV infection. High IgA on the other hand, would be a marker of concomitant infection as well as of disease progression. The results concern mostly drug addicts (the main risk group in Spain), but may apply to the other risk groups because no significant differences were detected between drug addicts (n = 81) and non-drug addicts (n = 19) for the studied variables (p greater than 0.05).