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J Oral Pathol Med. 1989 Oct;18(9):520-4.

High levels of oral yeasts in early HIV-1 infection.

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Clinical Investigations and Patient Care Branch, National Institute of Dental Research, Bethesda, Maryland 20892.


Ten human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) infected homosexual or bisexual individuals (ages 24-45) with no history of opportunistic infection were examined, by culture, for the presence of yeasts in whole saliva and on oral mucosa. All were HIV-1 antibody-positive men, non-smokers, non-denture wearers, and taking no medication. The mean salivary level of yeast was four logs higher in the HIV-1 infected group compared to a control group of normal, unmedicated, non-smoking men (ages 20-41) who denied any risk behavior for HIV-1 infection. Identification of the yeast in these HIV-1 positive individuals established that Candida albicans was the predominant species found in whole saliva and on buccal mucosa and tongue. Distinct hyphae were observed with only one mucosal sample. No significant correlation was found between whole saliva yeast concentration and the T4/T8 lymphocyte ratios or absolute number of T4 cells. No correlation was observed between oral yeast concentration and anti-C. albicans IgA titers. The high level of oral yeast in these individuals prior to the development of opportunistic infections is consistent with the suggestion that oral defense mechanisms are compromised in individuals following HIV-1 infection.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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