HIV-specific lymphoproliferative responses in asymptomatic HIV-infected individuals

O. Pontesilli, M. Carlesimo, A. R. Varani, R. Ferrara, E. C. Guerra, M. L. Bernardi, G. Ricci, A. M. Mazzone, G. D'Offizi, F. Aiuti

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In vitro lymphoproliferative responses to HIV-1 recombinant antigens (gp160, p24, and Rev protein) were studied in 83 patients with asymptomatic HIV-1 infection (CDC groups II and III) and circulating CD4 lymphocyte numbers > 400/mm3. Significant response to at least one of the three antigens was detected in 52.4% of the subjects, but the responses were weak, and concordance of the response to the three antigens was rare, the frequency of individuals responding to each antigen not exceeding 22.4%. Increasing frequencies of response were observed when recall antigens (tetanus toxoid and Candida albicans glycomannoprotein) (65.5%) and anti-CD3 MoAb (76.6%) were used as stimuli. Although a significant association between lymphocyte response to p24, but not gp160, and steadiness of CD4 lymphocyte numbers before the assay was observed, no predictive value for lack of CD4 cell decrease was confirmed for either antigen, and fluctuation of the responses to HIV antigens was seen during subsequent follow up. The panel of T cell assays used could be regarded as appropriate for monitoring both HIV-specific responses and T lymphocyte function during immunotherapy with soluble HIV antigens.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)419-424
Number of pages6
JournalClinical and Experimental Immunology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1995


  • gp160
  • HIV
  • lymphocyte
  • p24
  • proliferation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology


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