Stimulation of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 expression by ceramide

AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses. 1994 Jul;10(7):775-80. doi: 10.1089/aid.1994.10.775.


Ceramide, an intracellular lipid mediator of tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) action, was studied for its effects on the expression of the proviral human immunodeficiency virus type 1 genome in latently infected myelomonocytic cell lines U-1IIIB and OM-10.1. Ceramide treatment resulted in a 20- to 100-fold enhancement of HIV production in these cells. Ceramide also enhanced the expression of the chloramphenicol acetyltransferase gene directed by a human immunodeficiency virus type 1 long terminal repeat in transfected U-937 cells, indicating that ceramide acts at the level of viral transcription. These observations suggest that the TNF-ceramide signaling system may be involved in the regulation of HIV expression in certain myeloid cell types.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Cell Line, Transformed
  • Ceramides / pharmacology*
  • Chloramphenicol O-Acetyltransferase / biosynthesis
  • HIV Long Terminal Repeat / genetics
  • HIV-1 / drug effects*
  • HIV-1 / genetics
  • HIV-1 / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha / pharmacology


  • Ceramides
  • Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha
  • Chloramphenicol O-Acetyltransferase