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J Infect Dis. 1994 Jan;169(1):18-27.

Relationship between load of virus in alveolar macrophages from human immunodeficiency virus type 1-infected persons, production of cytokines, and clinical status.

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Department of Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, University Hospital of Cleveland, Ohio 44106-4984.


The level of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) in lymphocytes and mononuclear phagocytes (MP) from the blood and pulmonary alveoli from 14 HIV-1-infected subjects during early (asymptomatic) and late (AIDS) stages of disease and the relationship between virus burden in MP and cytokine expression were assessed. Among asymptomatic subjects, HIV-1 was undetectable or low in both blood monocytes and alveolar macrophages (AM). Among subjects with AIDS, there was a significant increase of HIV-1 in AM but not monocytes. The level of HIV-1 in blood lymphocytes was higher than in either monocytes or AM. AM (but not monocytes) expressed increased levels of lipopolysaccharide-stimulated cytokine mRNA (tumor necrosis factor-alpha, interleukin-1 beta, interleukin-6) during both early and late stages of HIV-1 infection regardless of virus load. AM thus may serve as a reservoir for virus in late stages of disease yet contribute to the immunopathogenesis of lung disease in both early and late stages through increased cytokine expression.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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