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Antiviral Res. 2010 Aug;87(2):269-71. doi: 10.1016/j.antiviral.2010.05.005. Epub 2010 May 22.

Macrophage HIV-1 infection in duodenal tissue of patients on long term HAART.

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Gastroenterology Unit, Hospital Juan A Fernandez, Buenos Aires, Argentina.


Mucosal surfaces play a major role in human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) transmission and pathogenesis. Since the role of intestinal macrophages as viral reservoirs during chronic HIV-1 infection has not been elucidated, we investigated the effects of successful therapy on intestinal HIV-1 persistence. Intestinal macrophage infection was demonstrated by the expression of p24 antigen by flow cytometry and by the presence of proviral DNA, assessed by PCR. Proviral DNA was detected in duodenal mucosa of HIV-infected patients under treatment with undetectable plasma viral load. These findings confirm that intestinal macrophages can act as viral reservoirs and permit HIV-1 production even after viral suppression following antiretroviral therapy.

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