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Blood. 2011 Jan 6;117(1):145-55. doi: 10.1182/blood-2010-08-301887. Epub 2010 Sep 24.

High expression levels of B lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS) by dendritic cells correlate with HIV-related B-cell disease progression in humans.

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Laboratoire d'immunogénétique, Centre de Recherche du Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de Montréal, Montréal, QC, Canada.


In view of assessing the possible contribution of dendritic cells (DCs) to HIV-related B-cell disorders, we have longitudinally measured B lymphocyte stimulator (BLyS) surface expression by myeloid DCs (mDCs) and concentrations of B-cell growth factors in the blood of subjects undergoing primary HIV infection with different rates of disease progression. We report that BLyS surface expression by mature mDCs and precursors as well as blood levels of BLyS, a proliferation-inducing ligand (APRIL), interleukin-6 (IL-6), and IL-10 increased above normal levels in both rapid and normal HIV progressors as quickly as in the acute phase of infection and persisting throughout the course of disease despite successful therapy. Consequently, hyperglobulinemia and high blood levels of circulating activated mature B cells and precursor/activated marginal zone (MZ)-like B cells were found throughout follow-up for both rapid and normal progressors. In contrast, mDC cell-surface expression of BLyS as well as blood levels of BLyS, immunoglobulin, activated mature B cells, and precursor/activated MZ-like B cells in aviremic slow progressors were similar to those observed in healthy donors. Interestingly, the levels of mature MZ B cells were significantly reduced in slow progressors. Our results suggest that DCs might modulate the outcome of the HIV-related B-cell disease progression through the expression of BLyS.

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