Distinct cellular immune properties in cerebrospinal fluid are associated with cognition in HIV-infected individuals initiating antiretroviral therapy

J Neuroimmunol. 2020 Jul 15:344:577246. doi: 10.1016/j.jneuroim.2020.577246. Epub 2020 Apr 27.


We examined the relationship between CSF immune cells and neurocognition and neuronal damage in HIV+ individuals before and after initiating antiretroviral therapy. Multivariate analysis at baseline indicated that greater CD4+ T cell abundance was associated with better cognition (p = .017), while higher CSF HIV RNA was associated with increased neuronal damage (p = .014). Following 24 weeks of antiretroviral therapy, CD8+ T cells, HLA-DR expressing CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, B cells, NK cells, and non-classical monocyte percentage decreased in CSF. Female gender was negatively associated with cognitive performance over time, as was higher percentage of HLA-DR expressing CD8+ T cells at baseline.

Keywords: AIDS; Cerebrospinal fluid; Cognition; Flow cytometry; HIV.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active / methods*
  • Cognition / drug effects
  • Cognition / physiology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • HIV Infections / cerebrospinal fluid*
  • HIV Infections / drug therapy
  • HIV Infections / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Cellular / drug effects
  • Immunity, Cellular / immunology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Viral Load / drug effects
  • Viral Load / immunology*