Author(s): Esbjrnsson J, Mnsson F, Kvist A, Isberg PE, Nowroozalizadeh S,
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Progressive immune dysfunction and the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) develop in most persons with untreated infection with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) but in only approximately 20 to 30\% of persons infected with HIV type 2 (HIV-2); among persons infected with both types, the natural history of disease progression is poorly understood. METHODS: We analyzed data from 223 participants who were infected with HIV-1 after enrollment (with either HIV-1 infection alone or HIV-1 and HIV-2 infection) in a cohort with a long follow-up duration (approximately 20 years), according to whether HIV-2 infection occurred first, the time to the development of AIDS (time to AIDS), CD4+ and CD8+ T-cell counts, and measures of viral evolution. RESULTS: The median time to AIDS was 104 months (95\% confidence interval [CI], 75 to 133) in participants with dual infection and 68 months (95\% CI, 60 to 76) in participants infected with HIV-1 only (P=0.003). CD4+ T-cell levels were higher and CD8+ T-cell levels increased at a lower rate among participants with dual infection, reflecting slower disease progression. Participants with dual infection with HIV-2 infection preceding HIV-1 infection had the longest time to AIDS and highest levels of CD4+ T-cell counts. HIV-1 genetic diversity was significantly lower in participants with dual infections than in those with HIV-1 infection alone at similar time points after infection. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that HIV-1 disease progression is inhibited by concomitant HIV-2 infection and that dual infection is associated with slower disease progression. The slower rate of disease progression was most evident in participants with dual infection in whom HIV-2 infection preceded HIV-1 infection. These findings could have implications for the development of HIV-1 vaccines and therapeutics. (Funded by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency-Swedish Agency for Research Cooperation with Developing Countries and others.).
This article was published in N Engl J Med
and referenced in Biochemistry & Physiology: Open Access