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J Leukoc Biol. 2003 Nov;74(5):676-82. Epub 2003 Jul 22.

Macrophage activation through CCR5- and CXCR4-mediated gp120-elicited signaling pathways.

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Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, USA.


Macrophages are major targets for infection by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1). In addition to their role as productive viral reservoirs, inappropriate activation of infected and uninfected macrophages appears to contribute to pathogenesis. HIV-1 infection requires initial interactions between the viral envelope surface glycoprotein gp120, the cell-surface protein CD4, and a chemokine receptor CCR5 or CXCR4. Besides their role in HIV-1 entry, CCR5 and CXCR4 are G protein-coupled receptors that can activate multiple intracellular signaling pathways. HIV-1 gp120 has been shown to activate signaling pathways through the chemokine receptors in several cell types including lymphocytes, neurons, and astrocytes. In some cell types, these consequences may cause cellular injury. In this review, we highlight our data demonstrating diverse signaling events that occur in primary human macrophages in response to gp120/chemokine receptor interactions. These responses include K+, Cl-, and nonselective cation currents, intracellular Ca2+ increases, and activation of several kinases including the focal adhesion-related tyrosine kinase Pyk2, mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPK), and phosphoinositol-3 kinase. Activation of the MAPK leads to gp120-induced expression of chemokines such as monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 and macrophage-inflammatory protein-1beta and the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor alpha. These responses establish a complex cytokine network, which may enhance or suppress HIV-1 replication. In addition, dysregulation of macrophage function by gp120/chemokine receptor signaling may contribute to local inflammation and injury and further recruit additional inflammatory and/or target cells. Targeting these cellular signaling pathways may have benefit in controlling inflammatory sequelae of HIV infection such as in neurological disease.

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