β-Endorphin content in HIV-infected HuT78 cell line and in peripheral lymphocytes from HIV-positive subjects

Wilma Barcellini, Paola Sacerdote, Maria Orietta Borghi, Gian Paolo Rizzardi, Cristina Fain, Carlo De Giuli Morghen, Barbara Manfredi, Adriano Lazzarin, Pier Luigi Meroni, Alberto E. Panerai, Carlo Zanussi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

We investigated β-endorphin (BE) content in an HIV-infected cell line and in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBM) from HIV-positive subjects. HIV infection increased BE content in HuT78 cell line compared to uninfected cells. Accordingly, BE content was greater in HIV-positive subjects than in healthy controls, both in fresh PBM and in mitogen-stimulated or unstimulated cultured cells. Further, in PHA-stimulated cultures, BE increase was correlated with disease progression. Opioids are known to decrease immune responsiveness in vivo, and it may be that the increased BE concentrations contribute to HIV-associated immune deficiency. In HIV-positive subjects, but not in healthy controls, intracellular BE concentration was positively correlated with PHA-induced PBM proliferation. The latter data suggest an alternative explanation: that the increased BE content represents a paradoxical response of the host in an attempt to balance virus-induced immunodepression. Thus, BE may be important in fine-tuning of the immune response with its up- and downregulation dependent upon differences in immune status.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)769-775
Number of pages7
JournalPeptides
Volume15
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1994

Keywords

  • Cytokines
  • HIV infection
  • Opioids
  • β-Endorphin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Physiology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience

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