Expression of the urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (uPAR) and its ligand (uPA) in brain tissues of human immunodeficiency virus patients with opportunistic cerebral diseases

Manuela Nebuloni, Paola Cinque, Nicolai Sidenius, Angelita Ferri, Eleonora Lauri, Elisabetta Omodeo-Zorini, Pietro Zerbi, Luca Vago

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (uPAR) and its ligand (uPA) play an important role in cell migration and extracellular proteolysis. We previously described uPAR/uPA overexpression in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and brain tissues of patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-related cerebral diseases. In this study, we examined uPAR/ uPA expression by immunohistochemistry (IHC) in brains of HIV patients with opportunistic cerebral lesions and in HIV-positive/negative controls. uPAR was found in macrophages/microglia with the highest levels in cytomegalovirus (CMV) encephalitis, toxoplasmosis, and lymphomas; in cryptococcosis and progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML) cases, only a few positive cells were found and no positivity was observed in controls. uPA expression was demonstrated only in a few macrophages/microglia and lymphocytes in all the cases and HIV-positive controls without different pattern of distribution; no uPA immunostaining was found in cryptococcosis and HIV-negative controls. The higher expression of uPAR/uPA in most of the opportunistic cerebral lesions supports their role in these diseases, suggesting their contribution to tissue injury.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-107
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of NeuroVirology
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Keywords

  • Central nervous system
  • HIV
  • Immunohistochemistry
  • Opportunistic infection
  • Plasminogen activation system

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Neurology

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