The kinetics and predictive value of HIV-1 DNA (HIV DNA) levels in relapsed or refractory HIV lymphoma patients, treated with high-dose chemotherapy (HDC) followed by autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT), were investigated. HIV DNA was measured by real-time PCR in the peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) of 22 patients observed for a median follow-up of 31.0 months. At baseline, HIV DNA was found to be correlated with HIV-1 RNA (HIV RNA) (r=0.56), but not with CD4+ counts (r=-0.10). HIV RNA load was under control for the entire follow-up, while HIV DNA levels were almost always detectable (baseline levels vs. 1 year from ASCT levels, p>0.05). Baseline HIV DNA levels were significantly different between alive and deceased patients (p=0.03), and the overall survival (OS) analysis showed that for patients with higher HIV DNA levels at baseline there was a higher and nearly significant risk of death if compared to patients with lower levels (HR, 8.33, 95% CI, 0.99-70.06, p=0.05). Our study demonstrated that high HIV DNA levels at baseline could predict overall survival after ASCT in one of the largest cohorts of HIV lymphoma patients treated with salvage therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases