Increased CD38 expression on T lymphocytes as a marker of HIV dissemination into the central nervous system

Chiara Dentone, Daniela Fenoglio, Eva Schenone, Giovanni Cenderello, Roberta Prinapori, Alessio Signori, Alessia Parodi, Francesca Kalli, Florinda Battaglia, Marcello Feasi, Bianca Bruzzone, Claudio Viscoli, Gilberto Filaci, Antonio Di Biagio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Cross-sectional analysis on 20 HIV-1 patients with neurological symptoms admitted to two infectious disease units. Cut-off of HIV-RNA (VL) was 20 copies/ml for plasma and cerebral spinal fluid (CSF). Flow cytometry was used to analyze the phenotype of circulating and CSF T lymphocytes. CD38 mean fluorescence intensity (MFI) was higher on circulating CD4+T lymphocytes from patients with VL>20 copies/ml in plasma (P=0.001) or CSF (P=0.001). The frequency of circulating CD8+CD38+T cells and CD38 MFI on these cells were higher in patients with VL>20 copies/ml than in those with undetectable plasma VL (P=0.030 and P=0.023). The frequency of CSF CD4+CD38+T, as well as their CD38 and CD95 MFI, were increased in patients with detectable than non-detectable plasma VL (P=0.01, P=0.03, and P=0.05). The % CD38+CD8+T in CSF correlated with time of virological suppression (ρ=-0.462, P=0.040) and the CNS penetration-effectiveness (CPE) score (ρ=-0.467, P=0.038). In conclusion, (a) the expression of CD38+ on both CD4+, CD8+T lymphocytes from peripheral blood and CSF discriminated between viremic and non-viremic patients and (b) T cell activation/apoptosis markers inversely correlated with CPE to remark the importance for therapy to restore immunological functions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-196
Number of pages7
JournalHIV Clinical Trials
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2015


  • CD38,
  • Cerebrospinal fluid
  • HIV,
  • T lymphocytes,

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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