Impaired response of HIV type 1-specific CD8(+) cells from antiretroviral-treated patients

AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2007 Oct;23(10):1279-82. doi: 10.1089/aid.2007.0082.


Impairment of the response of HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells, in spite of the high frequency of occurrence of these cells even in the advanced phase of HIV-1 infection, has been demonstrated. It is also known that new antiretroviral treatments are able to reduce the viral load and partially repair the immunological damage caused by HIV-1, but it is not clear whether the extent of these changes affects the functional profile of HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells. We evaluated, in HIV-1(+) patients undergoing antiretroviral therapy, the HIV-specific CD8(+) subset distribution and their functional capacity as intracellular expression of IFN-gamma, TNF-alpha, and perforin after PMA stimulation. Our results indicate that HIV-1(+)-treated individuals show distributions of HIV-specific CD8 subsets similar to nontreated patients, while the frequency of HIV-specific CD8 cells expressing IFN-gamma and perforin after stimulation is lower in HAART-treated patients. This indicates that HAART, which controls viral replication, may impair the HIV-specific CD8(+) response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / immunology*
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / metabolism
  • CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes / virology
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy*
  • HIV Infections / immunology*
  • HIV Infections / virology
  • HIV-1 / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Interferon-gamma / metabolism
  • Perforin / metabolism
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / metabolism


  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Perforin
  • Interferon-gamma