Brain and cognitive functions in two groups of naïve HIV patients selected for a different plan of antiretroviral therapy: A qEEG study

Claudio Babiloni, Alfredo Pennica, Paolo Capotosto, Paolo Onorati, Chiara Muratori, Stefano Ferracuti, Paolo Roma, Valentina Correr, Elisa Piccinni, Giuseppe Noce, Claudio Del Percio, Susanna Cordone, Cristina Limatola, Andrea Soricelli, Francesco Di Campli, Laura Gianserra, Lorenzo Ciullini, Antonio Aceti, Magdalena Viscione, Elisabetta TetiL. Sarmati, M. Andreoni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective Cortical sources of electroencephalographic (EEG) rhythms were investigated in two sub-populations of naïve HIV subjects, grouped based on clinical criteria to receive different combination anti-retroviral therapies (cARTs). These EEG sources were hypothesized to reflect beneficial effects of both regimes. Methods Eyes-closed resting state EEG data were collected in 19 (Group A) and 39 (Group B) naïve HIV subjects at baseline (i.e. pre-treatment; T0) and after 5 months of cART (T5). Compared with the Group A, the Group B was characterized by slightly worse serological parameters and higher cardiovascular risk. At T0, mean viral load (VL) and CD4 count were 87,694 copies/ml and 435 cells/μl in the Group A and 187,370 copies/ml and 331 cells/μl in the Group B. The EEG data were also collected in 50 matched control HIV-negative subjects. Cortical EEG sources were assessed by LORETA software. Results Compared to the Control Group, the HIV Groups showed lower alpha (8–12 Hz) source activity at T0 while the Group B also exhibited higher delta source activity. The treatment partially normalized alpha and delta source activity in the Group A and B, respectively, in association with improved VL, CD4, and cognitive functions. Conclusions Different cART regimens induced diverse beneficial effects in delta or alpha source activity in the two naïve HIV Groups. Significance These sources might unveil different neurophysiological effects of diverse cART on brain function in naïve HIV Groups as a function of clinical status and/or therapeutic compounds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3455-3469
Number of pages15
JournalClinical Neurophysiology
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2016


  • Alpha and delta rhythms
  • Antiretroviral therapy (cART)
  • CD4 counts
  • Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
  • Resting-state electroencephalography (EEG)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)


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