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J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2007 Oct 1;46(2):200-7.

Low and undetectable breast milk interleukin-7 concentrations are associated with reduced risk of postnatal HIV transmission.

Author information

1
Gertrude H. Sergievsky Center and Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University; New York, NY, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate if breast milk interleukin [IL]-7 concentrations are associated with postnatal HIV transmission.

DESIGN:

A case-control study nested within a cohort of women recruited in Lusaka, Zambia.

METHODS:

IL-7 breast milk concentrations were measured in samples from 24 HIV-infected breast-feeding women who transmitted HIV to their child after the neonatal period and from 47 women who did not transmit. Samples were frequency-matched by the time of sample collection (1 week and 1 month postpartum). Logistic regression was used to adjust for possible confounders. For comparison, samples from 18 HIV-uninfected women from the same community were included in the analysis, and plasma IL-7 was determined.

RESULTS:

Breast milk IL-7 concentrations were significantly higher than plasma IL-7 concentrations in all 3 groups. In contrast to levels among transmitters and HIV-uninfected women, breast milk IL-7 concentrations exhibited a bimodal distribution among nontransmitters. Breast milk IL-7 concentrations undetectable or less than 30 pg/mL were significantly associated with less HIV transmission (odds ratio = 0.13, 95% confidence interval: 0.03 to 0.64). The association remained strong after adjustment for breast milk viral load and sodium, maternal CD4 cell counts, parity, and time of sample collection.

CONCLUSION:

Breast milk IL-7 may be necessary for effective HIV transmission.

PMID:
17667336
PMCID:
PMC2803758
DOI:
10.1097/QAI.0b013e318141f942
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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