Chemokine receptors and neurotrophic factors: potential therapy against aids dementia?

J Neurosci Res. 2008 Feb 1;86(2):243-55. doi: 10.1002/jnr.21492.


Chemokine receptors, in particular, CXCR4 and CCR5, mediate human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection of immunocompetent cells and the apoptosis of these cells. However, the virus does not infect neurons. Yet through a variety of mechanisms, HIV promotes glial cell activation, synaptodendritic alterations, and neuronal loss that ultimately lead to motor and cognitive impairment. Chemokines and chemokine receptors are abundant in the adult central nervous system and play a role in neuronal apoptosis evoked by HIV proteins. Thus, reducing the availability of chemokine receptors may prevent the neuronal degeneration seen in HIV-positive patients. In this article, we present and discuss a recent experimental approach aimed at testing effective neuroprotective therapies against HIV-mediated neuronal degeneration.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • AIDS Dementia Complex / drug therapy*
  • AIDS Dementia Complex / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Central Nervous System / drug effects*
  • Chemokines / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Nerve Degeneration / prevention & control*
  • Nerve Degeneration / virology
  • Nerve Growth Factors / therapeutic use*
  • Receptors, Chemokine / metabolism*


  • Chemokines
  • Nerve Growth Factors
  • Receptors, Chemokine