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J Infect Dis. 1991 Mar;163(3):441-7.

Prolonged CD4+ lymphocytopenia and thrombocytopenia in a chimpanzee persistently infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1.

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Yerkes Regional Primate Research Center, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia.


The immunologic and virologic status of a chimpanzee inoculated with multiple isolates of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) were assessed over 57 months to determine whether prolonged thrombocytopenia and CD4+ lymphocytopenia observed in the animal might be associated with long-term HIV infection. Although the chimpanzee showed no signs of disease, it lost both CD4+ (as low as 134 cells/microliter) and CD8+ lymphocytes approximately 30 months after initial infection, followed by thrombocytopenia that has persisted for greater than 2 years. Lymphopenia and thrombocytopenia were preceded by or coincided with the appearance of antibodies cross-reactive with histone H2B and decreased levels of complement component C4; an eightfold decrease in HIV-specific antibody titers; the inability of CD8+ lymphocytes to suppress virus replication; impaired proliferative responses to T cell mitogens; and the isolation of cell-free HIV from plasma. These data suggest that, given sufficient time, HIV-infected chimpanzees may develop disease.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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