C1q/TNF-Related Proteins, HIV and HIV-Associated Factors, and Cardiometabolic Phenotypes in Middle-Aged Women

AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 2019 Nov/Dec;35(11-12):1054-1064. doi: 10.1089/AID.2019.0099. Epub 2019 Sep 3.


C1q/tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-related proteins (CTRPs) have been linked to energy homeostasis and vascular health. People with HIV are susceptible to cardiometabolic disease, but the contributions of different CTRPs are unknown. We investigated the associations of HIV and related factors with serum CTRPs, and CTRPs' relationships with cardiometabolic phenotypes. This involved a cross-sectional analysis of participants in the Women's Interagency HIV Study aged ≥35 with (n = 209) and without (n = 92) HIV who underwent carotid ultrasound in 2004-2005 and had stored serum available for measurement of total adiponectin and CTRPs 1, 3, 5, and 9. The Benjamini/Hochberg procedure was used to control the study-wide false-positive rate. HIV-positive women had significantly higher adiponectin than HIV-negative women after adjustment for sociodemographic, behavioral, and clinical variables [beta = 0.29 (95% confidence interval 0.11-0.47)]. Among HIV-positive women, lower CD4 count was associated with higher adiponectin and history of AIDS with higher CTRP9, but these were only nominally significant. There was no relationship between HIV status and CTRP 1, 3, or 5, nor was antiretroviral therapy or viral load associated with any CTRP. In the entire cohort, higher adiponectin was associated with significantly lower fasting glucose and insulin resistance, while higher CTRP5 [beta = -0.02 (-0.033 to -0.007)]-and, at a nominal level, CTRPs 1 and 3-was associated with significantly lower carotid intima-media thickness. In conclusion, in this sample of middle-aged women, HIV serostatus was positively associated with adiponectin, but not CTRPs. In turn, serum adiponectin was inversely associated with glucose dysregulation, whereas CTRP5 was inversely associated with carotid intima-media thickness. Further research is needed to determine CTRPs' role in atherosclerosis.

Keywords: CTRP; HIV; adiponectin; cardiovascular disease; glycemia; insulin resistance.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adiponectin / blood*
  • Adult
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / blood
  • Cardiovascular Diseases / etiology
  • Carotid Intima-Media Thickness
  • Cohort Studies
  • Complement C1q / analysis*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / blood
  • HIV Infections / complications*
  • HIV Infections / immunology
  • Humans
  • Insulin Resistance
  • Middle Aged
  • Phenotype
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor Receptor-Associated Peptides and Proteins / blood*
  • Viral Load


  • Adiponectin
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor Receptor-Associated Peptides and Proteins
  • Complement C1q