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Psychol Bull. 1997 Jul;122(1):56-71.

Is alcohol a cofactor of HIV and AIDS? Evidence from immunological and behavioral studies.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia.


The authors aim to critically examine empirical research on the effects of alcohol on HIV and AIDS from the immunological and behavioral fields. In vitro immunological studies demonstrate that social drinking increases the susceptibility of human cells to HIV infection. Animal studies show that acute and chronic alcohol ingestion increases rate of progression from retrovirus to clinical illness. In humans with HIV, no experimental evidence shows that alcohol is a cofactor of AIDS. Findings from behavioral studies show that a link between social drinking and risk of HIV is weak. No experimental evidence demonstrates that chronic drinking influences rate and course of disease progression to AIDS in humans who are HIV+. It is premature to promote the role of alcohol as a cofactor in HIV and AIDS.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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