H1N1 Influenza Vaccination in HIV-infected Women on Effective Antiretroviral Treatment Did Not Induce Measurable Antigen-Driven Proliferation of the HIV-1 Proviral Reservoir

AIDS Res Ther. 2017 Feb 13;14(1):7. doi: 10.1186/s12981-017-0135-1.


Objectives: Antigen-induced activation and proliferation of HIV-1-infected cells is hypothesized to be a mechanism of HIV persistence during antiretroviral therapy. The objective of this study was to determine if proliferation of H1N1-specific HIV-infected cells could be detected following H1N1 vaccination.

Methods: This study utilized cryopreserved PBMC from a previously conducted trial of H1N1 vaccination in HIV-infected pregnant women. HIV-1 DNA concentrations and 437 HIV-1 C2V5 env DNA sequences were analyzed from ten pregnant women on effective antiretroviral therapy, before and 21 days after H1N1 influenza vaccination.

Results: HIV-1 DNA concentration did not change after vaccination (median pre- vs. post-vaccination: 95.77 vs. 41.28 copies/million PBMC, p = .37). Analyses of sequences did not detect evidence of HIV replication or proliferation of infected cells.

Conclusions: Antigenic stimulation during effective ART did not have a detectable effect on the genetic makeup of the HIV-1 DNA reservoir. Longitudinal comparison of the amount and integration sites of HIV-1 in antigen-specific cells to chronic infections (such as herpesviruses) may be needed to definitively evaluate whether antigenic stimulation induces proliferation of HIV-1 infected cells.

Keywords: Antiretroviral therapy; Antiretroviral treatment; H1N1; HIV; HIV DNA; Influenza; Latency; Pregnancy; Vaccination.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-HIV Agents / therapeutic use
  • Antigens, Viral
  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active / methods
  • Base Sequence
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / blood
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy
  • HIV Infections / immunology*
  • HIV-1 / genetics
  • HIV-1 / growth & development
  • HIV-1 / isolation & purification*
  • Humans
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype / immunology*
  • Influenza Vaccines / administration & dosage
  • Influenza Vaccines / immunology*
  • Influenza, Human / drug therapy
  • Influenza, Human / immunology
  • Influenza, Human / prevention & control*
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / blood
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / drug therapy
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / immunology*
  • Pregnancy Complications, Infectious / virology
  • Proviruses / isolation & purification
  • Sequence Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Virus Replication


  • Anti-HIV Agents
  • Antigens, Viral
  • Influenza Vaccines