Acute cytomegalovirus infection is associated with increased frequencies of activated and apoptotic-vulnerable T cells in HIV-1 infected infants.

Publication Type:

Journal Article


Journal of virology, Volume 86, Issue 20, p.11373-11379 (2012)


2012, August 2012, Center-Authored Paper, Vaccine and Infectious Disease Division


Cytomegalovirus (CMV) co-infection is associated with infant HIV-1 disease progression and mortality. In a cohort of Kenyan HIV-infected infants, the frequency of activated (CD38(+)HLA-DR(+)) and apoptosis-vulnerable (CD95(+)Bcl-2(-)) CD4(+) and CD8(+) T cells increased substantially during acute CMV infection. The frequency of activated CD4(+) T cells was strongly associated with both concurrent CMV co-infection (p=0.001) and HIV-1 viral load (p=0.05). The frequency of apoptosis-vulnerable cells was also associated with CMV co-infection in the CD4 (p=0.02) and CD8 T cell subsets (p<0.001). Similar observations were made in HIV-exposed uninfected infants. CMV-induced increases in T cell activation and apoptosis could contribute to the rapid disease progression in co-infected infants.