In rhesus macaques (RMs), experimental depletion of CD4+ T-cells prior to SIV infection results in higher viremia and emergence of CD4-independent SIV-envelopes. In this study we used the rhesus recombinant anti-CD4 antibody CD4R1 to deplete RM CD4+ T-cells prior to SIVmac251 infection and investigate the sources of the increased viral burden and the lifespan of productively infected cells. CD4-depleted animals showed (i) set-point viral load two-logs higher than controls; (ii) macrophages constituting 80% of all SIV vRNA+ cells in lymph node and mucosal tissues; (iii) substantial expansion of pro-inflammatory monocytes; (iv) aberrant activation and infection of microglial cells; and (v) lifespan of productively infected cells significantly longer in comparison to controls, but markedly shorter than previously estimated for macrophages. The net effect of CD4+ T-cell depletion is an inability to control SIV replication and a shift in the tropism of infected cells to macrophages, microglia, and, potentially, other CD4-low cells which all appear to have a shortened in vivo lifespan. We believe these findings have important implications for HIV eradication studies.
The Xpert MTB/RIF (Xpert) assay is becoming a principal screening tool for diagnosing rifampin-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis complex (MTBC) infection. However, little is known about the performance of the Xpert assay in infections with both drug-sensitive and drug-resistant strains (mixed MTBC infections). We assessed the performance of the Xpert assay for detecting rifampin resistance using phenotypic drug sensitivity testing (DST) as the reference standard in 370 patients with microbiologically proven pulmonary tuberculosis. Mixed MTBC infections were identified genetically through 24-locus mycobacterial interspersed repetitive-unit-variable-number tandem-repeat (MIRU-VNTR) analysis. Logistic regression was used to identify the factors associated with poor (defined as treatment failure, default, and death from any cause) or good (defined as cure or successful treatment completion) clinical outcomes. The analytic sensitivity of the Xpert assay for detecting rifampin resistance was assessed in vitro by testing cultures containing different ratios of drug-sensitive and drug-resistant organisms. Rifampin resistance was detected by the Xpert assay in 52 (14.1%) and by phenotypic DST in 55 (14.9%) patients. Mixed MTBC infections were identified in 37 (10.0%) patients. The Xpert assay was 92.7% (95% confidence interval [CI], 82.4% to 97.9%) sensitive for detecting rifampin resistance and 99.7% (95% CI, 98.3% to 99.9%) specific. When restricted to patients with mixed MTBC infections, Xpert sensitivity was 80.0% (95% CI, 56.3 to 94.3%). False-negative Xpert results (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 6.6; 95% CI,1.2 to 48.2) and mixed MTBC infections (aOR, 6.5; 95% CI, 2.1 to 20.5) were strongly associated with poor clinical outcome. The Xpert assay failed to detect rifampin resistance in vitro when <90% of the organisms in the sample were rifampin resistant. Our study indicates that the Xpert assay has an increased false-negative rate for detecting rifampin resistance with mixed MTBC infections. In hyperendemic settings where mixed infections are common, the Xpert results might need further confirmation.
Recent studies have identified a subset of memory T cells with stem cell-like properties (T(SCM)) that include increased longevity and proliferative potential. In this study, we examined the dynamics of CD4(+) T(SCM) during pathogenic SIV infection of rhesus macaques (RM) and nonpathogenic SIV infection of sooty mangabeys (SM). Whereas SIV-infected RM show selective numeric preservation of CD4(+) T(SCM), SIV infection induced a complex perturbation of these cells defined by depletion of CD4(+)CCR5(+) T(SCM), increased rates of CD4(+) T(SCM) proliferation, and high levels of direct virus infection. The increased rates of CD4(+) T(SCM) proliferation in SIV-infected RM correlated inversely with the levels of central memory CD4(+) T cells. In contrast, nonpathogenic SIV infection of SM evidenced preservation of both CD4(+) T(SCM) and CD4(+) central memory T cells, with normal levels of CD4(+) T(SCM) proliferation, and lack of selective depletion of CD4(+)CCR5(+) T(SCM). Importantly, SIV DNA was below the detectable limit in CD4(+) T(SCM) from 8 of 10 SIV-infected SM. We propose that increased proliferation and infection of CD4(+) T(SCM) may contribute to the pathogenesis of SIV infection in RM.
BackgroundFungi are important pathogens but challenging to enumerate using next-generation sequencing because of low absolute abundance in many samples and high levels of fungal DNA from contaminating sources.ResultsHere, we analyze fungal lineages present in the human airway using an improved method for contamination filtering. We use DNA quantification data, which is routinely acquired during DNA library preparation, to annotate output sequence data and improve the identification and filtering of contaminants. We compare fungal communities and bacterial communities from healthy subjects, HIV+ subjects, and lung transplant recipients, providing a gradient of increasing lung impairment for comparison. We use deep sequencing to characterize ribosomal rRNA gene segments from fungi and bacteria in DNA extracted from bronchiolar lavage samples and oropharyngeal wash. Comparison to clinical culture data documents improved detection after applying the filtering procedure.ConclusionsWe find increased representation of medically relevant organisms, including Candida, Cryptococcus, and Aspergillus, in subjects with increasingly severe pulmonary and immunologic deficits. We analyze covariation of fungal and bacterial taxa, and find that oropharyngeal communities rich in Candida are also rich in mitis group Streptococci, a community pattern associated with pathogenic polymicrobial biofilms. Thus, using this approach, it is possible to characterize fungal communities in the human respiratory tract more accurately and explore their interactions with bacterial communities in health and disease.
CCR5 is the major coreceptor for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). We investigated whether site-specific modification of the gene ("gene editing")--in this case, the infusion of autologous CD4 T cells in which the CCR5 gene was rendered permanently dysfunctional by a zinc-finger nuclease (ZFN)--is safe.
Mother-to-infant transmission (MTIT) of HIV is a serious global health concern, with over 300,000 children newly infected in 2011. SIV infection of rhesus macaques (RMs) results in similar rates of MTIT to that of HIV in humans. In contrast, SIV infection of sooty mangabeys (SMs) rarely results in MTIT. The mechanisms underlying protection from MTIT in SMs are unknown. In this study we tested the hypotheses that breast milk factors and/or target cell availability dictate the rate of MTIT in RMs (transmitters) and SMs (non-transmitters). We measured viral loads (cell-free and cell-associated), levels of immune mediators, and the ability to inhibit SIV infection in vitro in milk obtained from lactating RMs and SMs. In addition, we assessed the levels of target cells (CD4+CCR5+ T cells) in gastrointestinal and lymphoid tissues, including those relevant to breastfeeding transmission, as well as peripheral blood from uninfected RM and SM infants. We found that frequently-transmitting RMs did not have higher levels of cell-free or cell-associated viral loads in milk compared to rarely-transmitting SMs. Milk from both RMs and SMs moderately inhibited in vitro SIV infection, and presence of the examined immune mediators in these two species did not readily explain the differential rates of transmission. Importantly, we found that the percentage of CD4+CCR5+ T cells was significantly lower in all tissues in infant SMs as compared to infant RMs despite robust levels of CD4+ T cell proliferation in both species. The difference between the frequently-transmitting RMs and rarely-transmitting SMs was most pronounced in CD4+ memory T cells in the spleen, jejunum, and colon as well as in central and effector memory CD4+ T cells in the peripheral blood. We propose that limited availability of SIV target cells in infant SMs represents a key evolutionary adaptation to reduce the risk of MTIT in SIV-infected SMs.
Nosocomial transmission of pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) is a problem in resource-limited settings. However, the degree of TB exposure and the intermediate- and long-term morbidity and mortality of hospital-associated TB is unclear. In this study we determined: 1) the nature, patterns and intensity of TB exposure occurring in the context of current TB cohorting practices in medical centre with a high prevalence of TB and HIV; 2) the one-year TB incidence after discharge; and 3) one-year TB-related mortality after hospital discharge.
Patients with multidrug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis may have phenotypic heterogeneity in results of drug-susceptibility tests (DSTs). However, the impact of this on clinical outcomes among patients treated for MDR tuberculosis is unknown.
Alcohol use has been linked to risky sexual behaviour and it has been identified as an important modifiable factor to prevent HIV infection. However, the evidence of a link between alcohol use and risky sexual behaviour is mixed. In this paper, we examine the role of alcohol use in sexual risk taking among women in Botswana.
Often, high-sensitivity, point-of-care (POC) clinical tests, such as HIV viral load, require large volumes of plasma. Although centrifuges are ubiquitously used in clinical laboratories to separate plasma from whole blood, centrifugation is generally inappropriate for on-site testing. Suitable alternatives are not readily available to separate the relatively large volumes of plasma from milliliters of blood that may be needed to meet stringent limit-of-detection specifications for low-abundance target molecules. We report on a simple-to-use, low-cost, pump-free, membrane-based, sedimentation-assisted plasma separator capable of separating a relatively large volume of plasma from undiluted whole blood within minutes. This plasma separator consists of an asymmetric, porous, polysulfone membrane housed in a disposable chamber. The separation process takes advantage of both gravitational sedimentation of blood cells and size exclusion-based filtration. The plasma separator demonstrated a "blood in-plasma out" capability, consistently extracting 275 ± 33.5 ?L of plasma from 1.8 mL of undiluted whole blood within less than 7 min. The device was used to separate plasma laden with HIV viruses from HIV virus-spiked whole blood with recovery efficiencies of 95.5% ± 3.5%, 88.0% ± 9.5%, and 81.5% ± 12.1% for viral loads of 35,000, 3500, and 350 copies/mL, respectively. The separation process is self-terminating to prevent excessive hemolysis. The HIV-laden plasma was then injected into our custom-made microfluidic chip for nucleic acid testing and was successfully subjected to reverse-transcriptase loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP), demonstrating that the plasma is sufficiently pure to support high-efficiency nucleic acid amplification.
Myeloid cells residing in the CNS and lymphoid tissues are targets for productive HIV-1 replication, and their infection contributes to the pathological manifestations of HIV-1 infection. The Envs can adopt altered configurations to overcome entry restrictions in macrophages via a more efficient and/or altered mechanism of engagement with cellular receptors. This review highlights evidence supporting an important role for macrophages in HIV-1 pathogenesis and persistence, which need to be considered for strategies aimed at achieving a functional or sterilizing cure. We also highlight that the molecular mechanisms underlying HIV-1 tropism for macrophages are complex, involving enhanced and/or altered interactions with CD4, CCR5, and/or CXCR4, and that the nature of these interactions may depend on the anatomical location of the virus.
HIV and SIV generally require CD4 binding prior to coreceptor engagement, but Env can acquire the ability to use CCR5 independently of CD4 under various circumstances. The ability to use CCR5 coupled with low-to-absent CD4 levels is associated with enhanced macrophage infection and increased neutralization sensitivity, but the additional features of these Envs that may affect cell targeting is not known.
CD4(+) T cells rather than macrophages are the principal cells infected by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) and simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) in vivo. Macrophage tropism has been linked to the ability to enter cells through CCR5 in conjunction with limiting CD4 levels, which are much lower on macrophages than on T cells. We recently reported that rhesus macaques (RM) experimentally depleted of CD4(+) T cells before SIV infection exhibit extensive macrophage infection as well as high chronic viral loads and rapid progression to AIDS. Here we show that early-time-point and control Envs were strictly CD4 dependent but that, by day 42 postinfection, plasma virus of CD4(+) T cell-depleted RM was dominated by Envs that mediate efficient infection using RM CCR5 independently of CD4. Early-time-point and control RM Envs were resistant to neutralization by SIV-positive (SIV(+)) plasma but became sensitive if preincubated with sCD4. In contrast, CD4-independent Envs were highly sensitive to SIV(+) plasma neutralization. However, plasma from SIV-infected CD4(+) T cell-depleted animals lacked this CD4-inducible neutralizing activity and failed to neutralize any Envs regardless of sCD4 pre-exposure status. Enhanced sensitivity of CD4-independent Envs from day 42 CD4(+) T cell-depleted RM was also seen with monoclonal antibodies that target both known CD4-inducible and other Env epitopes. CD4 independence and neutralization sensitivity were both conferred by Env amino acid changes E84K and D470N that arose independently in multiple animals, with the latter introducing a potential N-linked glycosylation site within a predicted CD4-binding pocket of gp120. Thus, the absence of CD4 T cells results in failure to produce antibodies that neutralize CD4-independent Envs and CD4-pretriggered control Envs. In the absence of this constraint and with a relative paucity of CD4(+) target cells, widespread macrophage infection occurs in vivo accompanied by emergence of variants carrying structural changes that enable entry independently of CD4.
Study of the human lung microbiome in the context of pulmonary health and disease is an area of emerging research interest that is being driven by several contributing factors. These factors include increased recognition of the diversity of human-associated microbiota, their roles in health and in diseases associated with chronic inflammation, and advancements in technologies and tools that have facilitated such discoveries about the microbiota in organ systems outside of the lung. Therefore, the overarching goals of lung microbiome research are: to identify and characterize microbial populations associated with the respiratory tract and lungs; to understand their roles in lung health and disease; and, we hope, to allow the development of improved approaches for diagnosing and treating chronic respiratory diseases in which the microbiome has a role. Recent studies of the lung microbiome have yielded a number of interesting findings but also highlighted questions and challenges for researchers and clinicians. In December 2011, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute convened a workshop to identify key issues and areas for further attention or development to advance research on the lung microbiome. Current knowledge and the state of research on the lung and related areas of human microbiome investigation were reviewed and discussed.
Lung infections caused by opportunistic or virulent pathogens are a principal cause of morbidity and mortality in HIV infection. It is unknown whether HIV infection leads to changes in basal lung microflora, which may contribute to chronic pulmonary complications that increasingly are being recognized in individuals infected with HIV.
Natural host sooty mangabeys (SM) infected with simian immunodeficiency virus SIVsmm do not develop AIDS despite high viremia. SM and other natural hosts express very low levels of CCR5 on CD4(+) T cells, and we recently showed that SIVsmm infection and robust replication occur in vivo in SM genetically lacking CCR5, indicating the use of additional entry pathways. SIVsmm uses several alternative coreceptors of human origin in vitro, but which molecules of SM origin support entry is unknown. We cloned a panel of putative coreceptors from SM and tested their ability to mediate infection, in conjunction with smCD4, by pseudotypes carrying Envs from multiple SIVsmm subtypes. smCXCR6 supported efficient infection by all SIVsmm isolates with entry levels comparable to those for smCCR5, and smGPR15 enabled entry by all isolates at modest levels. smGPR1 and smAPJ supported low and variable entry, whereas smCCR2b, smCCR3, smCCR4, smCCR8, and smCXCR4 were not used by most isolates. In contrast, SIVsmm from rare infected SM with profound CD4(+) T cell loss, previously reported to have expanded use of human coreceptors, including CXCR4, used smCXCR4, smCXCR6, and smCCR5 efficiently and also exhibited robust entry through smCCR3, smCCR8, smGPR1, smGPR15, and smAPJ. Entry was similar with both known alleles of smCD4. These alternative coreceptors, particularly smCXCR6 and smGPR15, may support virus replication in SM that have restricted CCR5 expression as well as SM genetically lacking CCR5. Defining expression of these molecules on SM CD4(+) subsets may delineate distinct natural host target cell populations capable of supporting SIVsmm replication without CD4(+) T cell loss.
CD4+ T cells play a central role in the immunopathogenesis of HIV/AIDS, and their depletion during chronic HIV infection is a hallmark of disease progression. However, the relative contribution of CD4+ T cells as mediators of antiviral immune responses and targets for virus replication is still unclear. Here, we have generated data in SIV-infected rhesus macaques (RMs) that suggest that CD4+ T cells are essential in establishing control of virus replication during acute infection. To directly assess the role of CD4+ T cells during primary SIV infection, we in vivo depleted these cells from RMs prior to infecting the primates with a pathogenic strain of SIV. Compared with undepleted animals, CD4+ lymphocyte-depleted RMs showed a similar peak of viremia, but did not manifest any post-peak decline of virus replication despite CD8+ T cell- and B cell-mediated SIV-specific immune responses comparable to those observed in control animals. Interestingly, depleted animals displayed rapid disease progression, which was associated with increased virus replication in non-T cells as well as the emergence of CD4-independent SIV-envelopes. Our results suggest that the antiviral CD4+ T cell response may play an important role in limiting SIV replication, which has implications for the design of HIV vaccines.
Innate lymphoid cells (ILCs), a heterogeneous cell population, are critical in orchestrating immunity and inflammation in the intestine, but whether ILCs influence immune responses or tissue homeostasis at other mucosal sites remains poorly characterized. Here we identify a population of lung-resident ILCs in mice and humans that expressed the alloantigen Thy-1 (CD90), interleukin 2 (IL-2) receptor a-chain (CD25), IL-7 receptor a-chain (CD127) and the IL-33 receptor subunit T1-ST2. Notably, mouse ILCs accumulated in the lung after infection with influenza virus, and depletion of ILCs resulted in loss of airway epithelial integrity, diminished lung function and impaired airway remodeling. These defects were restored by administration of the lung ILC product amphiregulin. Collectively, our results demonstrate a critical role for lung ILCs in restoring airway epithelial integrity and tissue homeostasis after infection with influenza virus.
Defining the biogeography of bacterial populations in human body habitats is a high priority for understanding microbial-host relationships in health and disease. The healthy lung was traditionally considered sterile, but this notion has been challenged by emerging molecular approaches that enable comprehensive examination of microbial communities. However, studies of the lung are challenging due to difficulties in working with low biomass samples.
Naturally simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV)-infected sooty mangabeys do not progress to AIDS despite high-level virus replication. We previously showed that the fraction of CD4(+)CCR5(+) T cells is lower in sooty mangabeys compared to humans and macaques. Here we found that, after in vitro stimulation, sooty mangabey CD4(+) T cells fail to upregulate CCR5 and that this phenomenon is more pronounced in CD4(+) central memory T cells (T(CM) cells). CD4(+) T cell activation was similarly uncoupled from CCR5 expression in sooty mangabeys in vivo during acute SIV infection and the homeostatic proliferation that follows antibody-mediated CD4(+) T cell depletion. Sooty mangabey CD4(+) T(CM) cells that express low amounts of CCR5 showed reduced susceptibility to SIV infection both in vivo and in vitro when compared to CD4(+) T(CM) cells of rhesus macaques. These data suggest that low CCR5 expression on sooty mangabey CD4(+) T cells favors the preservation of CD4(+) T cell homeostasis and promotes an AIDS-free status by protecting CD4(+) T(CM) cells from direct virus infection.
Contamination is a critical issue in high-throughput metagenomic studies, yet progress toward a comprehensive solution has been limited. We present SourceTracker, a Bayesian approach to estimate the proportion of contaminants in a given community that come from possible source environments. We applied SourceTracker to microbial surveys from neonatal intensive care units (NICUs), offices and molecular biology laboratories, and provide a database of known contaminants for future testing.
Entry coreceptor use by HIV-1 plays a pivotal role in viral transmission, pathogenesis and disease progression. In many HIV-1 infected individuals, there is an expansion in coreceptor use from CCR5 to include CXCR4, which is associated with accelerated disease progression. While targeting HIV-1 envelope interactions with coreceptor during viral entry is an appealing approach to combat the virus, the methods of determining coreceptor use and the changes in coreceptor use that can occur during disease progression are important factors that may complicate the use of therapies targeting this stage of HIV-1 replication. Indicator cells are typically used to determine coreceptor use by HIV-1 in vitro, but the coreceptors used on these cells can differ from those used on primary cell targets. V3 based genetic sequence algorithms are another method used to predict coreceptor use by HIV-1 strains. However, these algorithms were developed to predict coreceptor use in cell lines and not primary cells and, furthermore, are not highly accurate for some classes of viruses. This article focuses on R5X4 HIV-1, the earliest CXCR4-using variants, reviewing the pattern of coreceptor use on primary CD4+ lymphocytes and macrophages, the relationship between primary cell coreceptor use and the two principal approaches to coreceptor analysis (genetic prediction and indicator cell phenotyping), and the implications of primary cell coreceptor use by these strains for treatment with a new class of small molecule antagonists that inhibit CCR5-mediated entry. These are important questions to consider given the development of new CCR5 blocking therapies and the prognosis associated with CXCR4 use.
CC Chemokine Receptor 5 (CCR5) is an important mediator of chemotaxis and the primary coreceptor for HIV-1. A recent report by other researchers suggested that primary T cells harbor pools of intracellular CCR5. With the use of a series of complementary techniques to measure CCR5 expression (antibody labeling, Western blot, quantitative reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction), we established that intracellular pools of CCR5 do not exist and that the results obtained by the other researchers were false-positives that arose because of the generation of irrelevant binding sites for anti-CCR5 antibodies during fixation and permeabilization of cells.
Cigarette smokers have an increased risk of infectious diseases involving the respiratory tract. Some effects of smoking on specific respiratory tract bacteria have been described, but the consequences for global airway microbial community composition have not been determined. Here, we used culture-independent high-density sequencing to analyze the microbiota from the right and left nasopharynx and oropharynx of 29 smoking and 33 nonsmoking healthy asymptomatic adults to assess microbial composition and effects of cigarette smoking. Bacterial communities were profiled using 454 pyrosequencing of 16S sequence tags (803,391 total reads), aligned to 16S rRNA databases, and communities compared using the UniFrac distance metric. A Random Forest machine-learning algorithm was used to predict smoking status and identify taxa that best distinguished between smokers and nonsmokers. Community composition was primarily determined by airway site, with individuals exhibiting minimal side-of-body or temporal variation. Within airway habitats, microbiota from smokers were significantly more diverse than nonsmokers and clustered separately. The distributions of several genera were systematically altered by smoking in both the oro- and nasopharynx, and there was an enrichment of anaerobic lineages associated with periodontal disease in the oropharynx. These results indicate that distinct regions of the human upper respiratory tract contain characteristic microbial communities that exhibit disordered patterns in cigarette smokers, both in individual components and global structure, which may contribute to the prevalence of respiratory tract complications in this population.
In contrast to HIV infection in humans and SIV in macaques, SIV infection of natural hosts including sooty mangabeys (SM) is non-pathogenic despite robust virus replication. We identified a novel SM CCR5 allele containing a two base pair deletion (?2) encoding a truncated molecule that is not expressed on the cell surface and does not support SIV entry in vitro. The allele was present at a 26% frequency in a large SM colony, along with 3% for a CCR5?24 deletion allele that also abrogates surface expression. Overall, 8% of animals were homozygous for defective CCR5 alleles and 41% were heterozygous. The mutant allele was also present in wild SM in West Africa. CD8+ and CD4+ T cells displayed a gradient of CCR5 expression across genotype groups, which was highly significant for CD8+ cells. Remarkably, the prevalence of natural SIVsmm infection was not significantly different in animals lacking functional CCR5 compared to heterozygous and homozygous wild-type animals. Furthermore, animals lacking functional CCR5 had robust plasma viral loads, which were only modestly lower than wild-type animals. SIVsmm primary isolates infected both homozygous mutant and wild-type PBMC in a CCR5-independent manner in vitro, and Envs from both CCR5-null and wild-type infected animals used CXCR6, GPR15 and GPR1 in addition to CCR5 in transfected cells. These data clearly indicate that SIVsmm relies on CCR5-independent entry pathways in SM that are homozygous for defective CCR5 alleles and, while the extent of alternative coreceptor use in SM with CCR5 wild type alleles is uncertain, strongly suggest that SIVsmm tropism and host cell targeting in vivo is defined by the distribution and use of alternative entry pathways in addition to CCR5. SIVsmm entry through alternative pathways in vivo raises the possibility of novel CCR5-negative target cells that may be more expendable than CCR5+ cells and enable the virus to replicate efficiently without causing disease in the face of extremely restricted CCR5 expression seen in SM and several other natural host species.
AIMS: Prior studies have shown that HAART is associated with decreased HIV viral load in the lungs. The correlation between antiretroviral exposure in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid and virologic response was evaluated in patients starting HAART and enrolled in The AIDS Clinical Trial Group Protocol 723. MATERIALS #ENTITYSTARTX00026; METHODS: A total of 24 subjects underwent blood and BAL sampling prior to starting HAART, and after 4 and 24 weeks of HAART. Drug concentrations and HIV RNA were measured in paired plasma and BAL samples. RESULTS: Antiretroviral drugs, including efavirenz, were detectable in BAL fluid of HIV-infected subjects beginning HAART. Efavirenz was also associated with a higher likelihood of clearing HIV RNA from the lungs. CONCLUSION: These results suggest the excellent pulmonary virologic response to antiretroviral therapy may, in part, be due to penetration of antiretroviral drugs into the alveolar compartment.
R5X4 HIV-1 has impaired utilization of CCR5 on primary CD4+ lymphocytes but the mechanisms responsible are not well defined. Using a panel of diverse R5X4 Envs we identified a spectrum of CCR5 use on CD4+ lymphocytes. Greater lymphocyte CCR5 use correlated with relative resistance to CCR5 mAbs and small molecule antagonists. Increasing CCR5 expression on lymphocytes increased the proportion of entry mediated by CCR5 for all R5X4 isolates except 89.6. In cell lines with regulated CCR5 expression, strains with greater lymphocyte CCR5 use better exploited limiting levels of CCR5. Introduction of an R306S mutation in the 89.6 V3 domain enhanced its utilization of CCR5 at low levels and switched its preference to CCR5 for lymphocyte entry. Thus, the degree to which R5X4 HIV-1 use primary lymphocyte CCR5 is determined by low CCR5 expression coupled with variations in the efficiency of Env-CCR5 interactions, which is in part governed by V3 sequences.
We previously reported that a human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) clade B envelope protein with a severely truncated V3 loop regained function after passage in tissue culture. The adapted virus, termed TA1, retained the V3 truncation, was exquisitely sensitive to neutralization by the CD4 binding site monoclonal antibody b12 and by HIV-positive human sera, used CCR5 to enter cells, and was completely resistant to small molecule CCR5 antagonists. To examine the mechanistic basis for these properties, we singly and in combination introduced each of the 5 mutations from the adapted clone TA1 into the unadapted envelope. We found that single amino acid changes in the C3 region, the V3 loop, and in the fusion peptide were responsible for imparting near-normal levels of envelope function to TA1. T342A, which resulted in the loss of a highly conserved glycosylation site in C3, played the primary role. The adaptive amino acid changes had no impact on CCR5 antagonist resistance but made virus more sensitive to neutralization by antibodies to the CD4 binding site, modestly enhanced affinity for CD4, and made TA1 more responsive to CD4 binding. Specifically, TA1 was triggered by soluble CD4 more readily than the parental Env and, unlike the parental Env, could mediate entry on cells that express low levels of CD4. In contrast, TA1 interacted with CCR5 less efficiently and was highly sensitive to antibodies that bind to the CCR5 N terminus and ECL2. Therefore, enhanced utilization of CD4 is one mechanism by which HIV-1 can overcome mutations in the V3 region that negatively affect CCR5 interactions.
MIP-1beta/CCL4 is a principal regulator of macrophage migration and signals through CCR5. Several protein kinases are linked to CCR5 in macrophages including the src kinase Lyn, PI3K, focal adhesion related kinase Pyk2, and members of the MAPK family, but whether and how these kinases regulate macrophage chemotaxis are not known. To define the role of these signaling molecules, we examined the functions and interactions of endogenous proteins in primary human macrophages. Using siRNA gene silencing and pharmacologic inhibition, we show that chemotaxis in response to CCR5 stimulation by MIP-1beta requires activation of Pyk2, PI3K p85, and Lyn, as well as MAPK ERK. MIP-1beta activation of CCR5 triggered translocation of Pyk2 and PI3K p85 from the cytoplasm to colocalize with Lyn at the plasma membrane with formation of a multimolecular complex. We show further that arrestins were recruited into the complex, and arrestin down-regulation impaired complex formation and macrophage chemotaxis toward MIP-1beta. Together, these results identify a novel mechanism of chemokine receptor regulation of chemotaxis and suggest that arrestins may serve as scaffolding proteins linking CCR5 to multiple downstream signaling molecules in a biologically important primary human cell type.
Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection of the central nervous system (CNS) can result in neurological dysfunction with devastating consequences in a significant proportion of individuals with acquired immune deficiency syndrome. HIV-1 does not infect neurons directly but induces damage indirectly through the accumulation of activated macrophage/microglia (M/M) cells, some of which are infected, that release neurotoxic mediators including both cellular activation products and viral proteins. One mechanism for the accumulation of activated M/M involves the development in infected individuals of an activated peripheral blood monocyte population that traffics through the blood-brain barrier, a process that also serves to carry virus into CNS and establish local infection. A second mechanism involves the release by infected and activated M/M in the CNS of chemotactic mediators that recruit additional monocytes from the periphery. These activated M/M, some of which are infected, release a number of cytokines and small molecule mediators as well as viral proteins that act on bystander cells and in turn activate them, thus amplifying the cascade. These viral proteins and cellular products have neurotoxic properties as well, both directly and through induction of astrocyte dysfunction, which ultimately lead to neuronal injury and death. In patients effectively treated with antiretroviral therapy, frank dementia is now uncommon and has been replaced by milder forms of neurocognitive impairment, with less frequent and more focal neuropathology. This review summarizes key findings that support the critical role and mechanisms of monocyte/macrophage activation and inflammation as a major component for HIV-1 encephalitis or HIV-1 associated dementia.
Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 transmission selects for virus variants with genetic characteristics distinct from those of donor quasispecies, but the biological factors favoring their transmission or establishment in new hosts are poorly understood. We compared primary target cell tropisms and entry coreceptor utilizations of donor and recipient subtype C Envs obtained near the time of acute infection from Zambian heterosexual transmission pairs. Both donor and recipient Envs demonstrated only modest macrophage tropism, and there was no overall difference between groups in macrophage or CD4 T-cell infection efficiency. Several individual pairs showed donor/recipient differences in primary cell infection, but these were not consistent between pairs. Envs had surprisingly broad uses of GPR15, CXCR6, and APJ, but little or no use of CCR2b, CCR3, CCR8, GPR1, and CXCR4. Donors overall used GPR15 better than did recipients. However, while several individual pairs showed donor/recipient differences for GPR15 and/or other coreceptors, the direction of the differences was inconsistent, and several pairs had unique alternative coreceptor patterns that were conserved across the transmission barrier. CCR5/CCR2b chimeras revealed that recipients as a group were more sensitive than were donors to replacement of the CCR5 extracellular loops with corresponding regions of CCR2b, but significant differences in this direction were not consistent within pairs. These data show that sexual transmission does not select for enhanced macrophage tropism, nor for preferential use of any alternative coreceptor. Recipient Envs are somewhat more constrained than are donors in flexibility of CCR5 use, but this pattern is not universal for all pairs, indicating that it is not an absolute requirement.
Mechanisms that may allow circulating monocytes to persist as CD4 T cells diminish in HIV-1 infection have not been investigated. We have characterized steady-state gene expression signatures in circulating monocytes from HIV-infected subjects and have identified a stable antiapoptosis gene signature comprised of 38 genes associated with p53, CD40L, TNF, and MAPK signaling networks. The significance of this gene signature is indicated by our demonstration of cadmium chloride- or Fas ligand-induced apoptosis resistance in circulating monocytes in contrast to increasing apoptosis in CD4 T cells from the same infected subjects. As potential mechanisms in vivo, we show that monocyte CCR5 binding by HIV-1 virus or agonist chemokines serves as independent viral and host modulators resulting in increased monocyte apoptosis resistance in vitro. We also show evidence for concordance between circulating monocyte apoptosis-related gene expression in HIV-1 infection in vivo and available datasets following viral infection or envelope exposure in monocyte-derived macrophages in vitro. The identification of in vivo gene expression associated with monocyte resistance to apoptosis is of relevance to AIDS pathogenesis since it would contribute to: 1) maintaining viability of infection targets and long-term reservoirs of HIV-1 infection in the monocyte/macrophage populations, and 2) protecting a cell subset critical to host survival despite sustained high viral replication.
We report the safety and tolerability of 87 infusions of lentiviral vector–modified autologous CD4 T cells (VRX496-T; trade name, Lexgenleucel-T) in 17 HIV patients with well-controlled viremia. Antiviral effects were studied during analytic treatment interruption in a subset of 13 patients. VRX496-T was associated with a decrease in viral load set points in 6 of 8 subjects (P = .08). In addition, A ? G transitions were enriched in HIV sequences after infusion, which is consistent with a model in which transduced CD4 T cells exert antisense-mediated genetic pressure on HIV during infection. Engraftment of vector-modified CD4 T cells was measured in gut-associated lymphoid tissue and was correlated with engraftment in blood. The engraftment half-life in the blood was approximately 5 weeks, with stable persistence in some patients for up to 5 years. Conditional replication of VRX496 was detected periodically through 1 year after infusion. No evidence of clonal selection of lentiviral vector–transduced T cells or integration enrichment near oncogenes was detected. This is the first demonstration that gene-modified cells can exert genetic pressure on HIV. We conclude that gene-modified T cells have the potential to decrease the fitness of HIV-1 and conditionally replicative lentiviral vectors have a promising safety profile in T cells.
Microbes of the human respiratory tract are important in health and disease, but accurate sampling of the lung presents challenges. Lung microbes are commonly sampled by bronchoscopy, but to acquire samples the bronchoscope must pass through the upper respiratory tract, which is rich in microbes. Here we present methods to identify authentic lung microbiota in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid that contains substantial oropharyngeal admixture. We studied clinical BAL samples from six selected subjects with potential heavy lung colonization. A single sample of BAL fluid was obtained from each subject along with contemporaneous oral wash (OW) to sample the oropharynx, and then DNA was extracted from three separate aliquots of each. Bacterial 16S rDNA sequences were amplified and products analyzed by 454 pyrosequencing. By comparing replicates, we were able to specify the depth of sequencing needed to reach a 95% chance of identifying a bacterial lineage of a given proportion--for example, at a depth of 5,000 tags, OTUs of proportion 0.3% or greater would be called with 95% confidence. We next constructed a single-sided outlier test that allowed lung-enriched organisms to be quantified against a background of oropharyngeal admixture, and assessed improvements available with replicate sequence analysis. This allowed identification of lineages enriched in lung in some BAL specimens. Finally, using samples from healthy volunteers collected at multiple sites in the upper respiratory tract, we show that OW provides a reasonable but not perfect surrogate for bacteria carried into to the lung by a bronchoscope. These methods allow identification of microbes that can replicate in the lung despite the background due to oropharyngeal microbes derived from aspiration and bronchoscopic carry-over.
The human microbiome plays an important role in human disease and health. Identification of factors that affect the microbiome composition can provide insights into disease mechanism as well as suggest ways to modulate the microbiome composition for therapeutical purposes. Distance-based statistical tests have been applied to test the association of microbiome composition with environmental or biological covariates. The unweighted and weighted UniFrac distances are the most widely used distance measures. However, these two measures assign too much weight either to rare lineages or to most abundant lineages, which can lead to loss of power when the important composition change occurs in moderately abundant lineages.
We have previously described an antiapoptotic steady-state gene expression profile in circulating human monocytes from asymptomatic viremic HIV(+) donors, but the mechanism associated with this apoptosis resistance remains to be fully elucidated. Here, we show that Rb1 activation is a dominant feature of apoptosis resistance in monocytes exposed to HIV-1 in vivo (as measured ex vivo) and in vitro. Monocytes from asymptomatic viremic HIV(+) individuals show a positive correlation between levels of hypophosphorylated (active) Rb1 and VL in conjunction with increases in other p53-inducible proteins associated with antiapoptosis regulation, such as p21 and PAI-1 (SERPINE1), when compared with circulating monocytes from uninfected donors. Monocytes exposed in vitro to HIV-1 R5 isolates but not X4 isolates showed lower caspase-3 activation after apoptosis induction, indicating a role for the CCR5 signaling pathway. Moreover, monocytes exposed to R5 HIV-1 or MIP-1 ? induced Rb1 and p21 expression and an accumulation of autophagy markers, LC3 and Beclin. The inhibition of Rb1 activity in HIV-1 R5 viral-exposed monocytes using siRNA led to increased apoptosis sensitivity, thereby confirming a central role for Rb1 in the antiapoptotic phenotype. Our data identify Rb1 induction in chronic asymptomatic HIV-1 infection as a mediator of apoptosis resistance in monocytes in association with protective autophagy and contributing to monocyte survival during immune activation and/or HIV-1 viremia.
The mammalian intestinal tract is colonized by trillions of beneficial commensal bacteria that are anatomically restricted to specific niches. However, the mechanisms that regulate anatomical containment remain unclear. Here, we show that interleukin-22 (IL-22)-producing innate lymphoid cells (ILCs) are present in intestinal tissues of healthy mammals. Depletion of ILCs resulted in peripheral dissemination of commensal bacteria and systemic inflammation, which was prevented by administration of IL-22. Disseminating bacteria were identified as Alcaligenes species originating from host lymphoid tissues. Alcaligenes was sufficient to promote systemic inflammation after ILC depletion in mice, and Alcaligenes-specific systemic immune responses were associated with Crohns disease and progressive hepatitis C virus infection in patients. Collectively, these data indicate that ILCs regulate selective containment of lymphoid-resident bacteria to prevent systemic inflammation associated with chronic diseases.
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