Association of differentiation state of CD4+ T cells and disease progression in HIV-1 perinatally infected children.
Sharp ER., Willberg CB., Kuebler PJ., Abadi J., Fennelly GJ., Dobroszycki J., Wiznia AA., Rosenberg MG., Nixon DF.
BACKGROUND: In the USA, most HIV-1 infected children are on antiretroviral drug regimens, with many individuals surviving through adolescence and into adulthood. The course of HIV-1 infection in these children is variable, and understudied. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We determined whether qualitative differences in immune cell subsets could explain a slower disease course in long term survivors with no evidence of immune suppression (LTS-NS; CD4%≥25%) compared to those with severe immune suppression (LTS-SS; CD4%≤15%). Subjects in the LTS-NS group had significantly higher frequencies of naïve (CCR7+CD45RA+) and central memory (CCR7+CD45RA-) CD4+ T cells compared to LTS-SS subjects (p = 0.0005 and <0.0001, respectively). Subjects in the rapid progressing group had significantly higher levels of CD4+ T(EMRA) (CCR7-CD45RA+) cells compared to slow progressing subjects (p<0.0001). CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Rapid disease progression in vertical infection is associated with significantly higher levels of CD4+ T(EMRA) (CCR7-CD45RA+) cells.