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BACKGROUND - Kaposi sarcoma (KS) remains common among HIV-infected persons. To better understand KS etiology and to help target prevention efforts, we comprehensively examined a variety of CD4 T-cell count and HIV-1 RNA viral load (VL) measures, as well as antiretroviral therapy (ART) use, to determine independent predictors of KS risk.
SETTING - North American AIDS Cohort Collaboration on Research and Design.
METHODS - We followed HIV-infected persons during 1996-2009 from 18 cohorts. We used time-updated Cox regression to model relationships between KS risk and recent, lagged, trajectory, and cumulative CD4 count or VL measures, as well as ART use. We used Akaike's information criterion and global P values to derive a final model.
RESULTS - In separate models, the relationship between each measure and KS risk was highly significant (P < 0.0001). Our final mutually adjusted model included recent CD4 count [hazard ratio (HR) for <50 vs. ≥500 cells/μL = 12.4; 95% confidence interval (CI): 6.5 to 23.8], recent VL (HR for ≥100,000 vs. ≤500 copies/mL = 3.8; 95% CI: 2.0 to 7.3), and cumulative (time-weighted mean) VL (HR for ≥100,000 vs. ≤500 copies/mL = 2.5; 95% CI: 1.0 to 5.9). Each P-trend was <0.0001. After adjusting for these measures, we did not detect an independent association between ART use and KS risk.
CONCLUSIONS - Our results suggested a multifactorial etiology for KS, with early and late phases of development. The cumulative VL effect suggested that controlling HIV replication promptly after HIV diagnosis is important for KS prevention. We observed no evidence for direct anti-KS activity of ART, independent of CD4 count and VL.
MicroRNA expression in formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded tissue (FFPE) or plasma may add value for cancer management. The GastroGenus miR Panel was developed to measure 55 cancer-specific human microRNAs, Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-encoded microRNAs, and controls. This Q-rtPCR panel was applied to 100 FFPEs enriched for adenocarcinoma or adjacent non-malignant mucosa, and to plasma of 31 patients. In FFPE, microRNAs upregulated in malignant versus adjacent benign gastric mucosa were hsa-miR-21, -155, -196a, -196b, -185, and -let-7i. Hsa-miR-18a, 34a, 187, -200a, -423-3p, -484, and -744 were downregulated. Plasma of cancer versus non-cancer controls had upregulated hsa-miR-23a, -103, and -221 and downregulated hsa-miR-378, -346, -486-5p, -200b, -196a, -141, and -484. EBV-infected versus uninfected cancers expressed multiple EBV-encoded microRNAs, and concomitant dysregulation of four human microRNAs suggests that viral infection may alter cellular biochemical pathways. Human microRNAs were dysregulated between malignant and benign gastric mucosa and between plasma of cancer patients and non-cancer controls. Strong association of EBV microRNA expression with known EBV status underscores the ability of microRNA technology to reflect disease biology. Expression of viral microRNAs in concert with unique human microRNAs provides novel insights into viral oncogenesis and reinforces the potential for microRNA profiles to aid in classifying gastric cancer subtypes. Pilot studies of plasma suggest the potential for a noninvasive addition to cancer diagnostics.
Because of limitations in the availability of data on primary care encounters, patient retention in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) care is often estimated using laboratory measurement dates as proxies for clinical encounters, leading to possible outcome misclassification. This study included 83,041 HIV-infected adults from 14 clinical cohorts in the North American AIDS Cohort Collaboration on Research and Design (NA-ACCORD) who had ≥1 HIV primary care encounters during 2000-2010, contributing 468,816 person-years of follow-up. Encounter-based retention (REB) was defined as ≥2 encounters in a calendar year, ≥90 days apart. Laboratory-based retention (RLB) was defined similarly, using the dates of CD4-positive cell counts or HIV-1 RNA measurements. Percentage of agreement and the κ statistic were used to characterize agreement between RLB and REB. Logistic regression with generalized estimating equations and stabilized inverse-probability-of-selection weights was used to elucidate temporal trends and the discriminatory power of RLB as a predictor of REB, accounting for age, sex, race/ethnicity, primary HIV risk factor, and cohort site as potential confounders. Both REB and RLB increased from 2000 to 2010 (from 67% to 78% and from 65% to 77%, respectively), though REB was higher than RLB throughout (P < 0.01). RLB agreed well with REB (80%-86% agreement; κ = 0.55-0.62, P < 0.01) and had a strong, imperfect ability to discriminate between persons retained and not retained in care by REB (C statistic: C = 0.81, P < 0.05). As a proxy for REB, RLB had a sensitivity and specificity of 84% and 77%, respectively, with misclassification error of 18%.
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BACKGROUND & AIMS - Genetic polymorphisms within the interferon lambda (IFN-λ) region are strongly associated with hepatitis C virus (HCV) clearance; the IFNL4-ΔG/TT (rs368234815) polymorphism, which controls the generation of IFN-λ4 protein, is more strongly associated with HCV clearance than rs12979860 (the 'IL28B variant'). An IFNL3 3' untranslated region polymorphism (rs4803217) has been proposed as a causal variant that may affect HCV clearance by altering IFNL3 mRNA stability.
METHODS - We compared IFNL4-ΔG/TT and rs4803217 for association with response to pegylated-IFN-α/ribavirin in the VIRAHEP-C and HALT-C trials, and spontaneous HCV clearance in the ALIVE, UHS and WIHS studies. Genotyping was performed with TaqMan assays. We compared differences in mean reduction in HCV RNA levels by genotype and haplotype. For HCV clearance, we calculated p-values comparing c-statistics for IFNL4-ΔG/TT and rs4803217 genotypes by a bootstrap approach.
RESULTS - Among European Americans, linkage disequilibrium between IFNL4-ΔG/TT and rs4803217 was strong (r(2)=0.89-0.99) and there were no significant differences between the variants. In African American (AA) individuals enrolled in VIRAHEP-C, HCV RNA at treatment day 28 was more strongly associated with IFNL4-ΔG/TT than rs4803217 (p=0.003); the IFNL4-ΔG:rs4803217-G haplotype, which includes the putatively favorable IFNL3 allele, was actually associated with the poorest day 28 response (p=0.03, comparison to IFNL4-ΔG:rs4803217-T haplotype). Among AA participants, associations were stronger for IFNL4-ΔG/TT than rs4803217 for undetectable HCV RNA at week 24 in Virahep-C (p=0.03) and week 20 in HALT-C (p=0.03), as well as for spontaneous HCV clearance (p=0.048).
CONCLUSION - IFNL4-ΔG/TT is the primary IFN-λ region polymorphism for impaired HCV clearance.
Published by Elsevier B.V.
UNLABELLED - A common feature of infection by positive-sense RNA virus is the modification of host cell cytoplasmic membranes that serve as sites of viral RNA synthesis. Coronaviruses induce double-membrane vesicles (DMVs), but the role of DMVs in replication and virus fitness remains unclear. Coronaviruses encode 16 nonstructural proteins (nsps), three of which, nsp3, nsp4, and nsp6, are necessary and sufficient for DMV formation. It has been shown previously that mutations in murine hepatitis virus (MHV) nsp4 loop 1 that alter nsp4 glycosylation are associated with disrupted DMV formation and result in changes in virus replication and RNA synthesis. However, it is not known whether DMV morphology or another function of nsp4 glycosylation is responsible for effects on virus replication. In this study, we tested whether mutations across nsp4, both alone and in combination with mutations that abolish nsp4 glycosylation, affected DMV formation, replication, and fitness. Residues in nsp4 distinct from glycosylation sites, particularly in the endoplasmic reticulum (ER) luminal loop 1, independently disrupted both the number and morphology of DMVs and exacerbated DMV changes associated with loss of glycosylation. Mutations that altered DMV morphology but not glycosylation did not affect virus fitness while viruses lacking nsp4 glycosylation exhibited a loss in fitness. The results support the hypothesis that DMV morphology and numbers are not key determinants of virus fitness. The results also suggest that nsp4 glycosylation serves roles in replication in addition to the organization and stability of MHV-induced double-membrane vesicles.
IMPORTANCE - All positive-sense RNA viruses modify host cytoplasmic membranes for viral replication complex formation. Thus, defining the mechanisms of virus-induced membrane modifications is essential for both understanding virus replication and development of novel approaches to virus inhibition. Coronavirus-induced membrane changes include double-membrane vesicles (DMVs) and convoluted membranes. Three viral nonstructural proteins (nsps), nsp3, nsp4, and nsp6, are known to be required for DMV formation. It is unknown how these proteins induce membrane modification or which regions of the proteins are involved in DMV formation and stability. In this study, we show that mutations across nsp4 delay virus replication and disrupt DMV formation and that loss of nsp4 glycosylation is associated with a substantial fitness cost. These results support a critical role for nsp4 in DMV formation and virus fitness.
Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.
BACKGROUND - Nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor-based antiretroviral therapy is not suitable for all treatment-naive HIV-infected persons.
OBJECTIVE - To evaluate 3 nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor-sparing initial antiretroviral regimens to show equivalence for virologic efficacy and tolerability.
DESIGN - A phase 3, open-label study randomized in a 1:1:1 ratio with follow-up for at least 96 weeks. (ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT00811954).
SETTING - 57 sites in the United States and Puerto Rico.
PATIENTS - Treatment-naive persons aged 18 years or older with HIV-1 RNA levels greater than 1000 copies/mL without resistance to nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors or protease inhibitors.
INTERVENTION - Atazanavir, 300 mg/d, with ritonavir, 100 mg/d; raltegravir, 400 mg twice daily; or darunavir, 800 mg/d, with ritonavir, 100 mg/d, plus combination emtricitabine, 200 mg/d, and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate, 300 mg/d.
MEASUREMENTS - Virologic failure, defined as a confirmed HIV-1 RNA level greater than 1000 copies/mL at or after 16 weeks and before 24 weeks or greater than 200 copies/mL at or after 24 weeks, and tolerability failure, defined as discontinuation of atazanavir, raltegravir, or darunavir for toxicity. A secondary end point was a combination of virologic efficacy and tolerability.
RESULTS - Among 1809 participants, all pairwise comparisons of incidence of virologic failure over 96 weeks showed equivalence within a margin of equivalence defined as -10% to 10%. Raltegravir and ritonavir-boosted darunavir were equivalent for tolerability, whereas ritonavir-boosted atazanavir resulted in a 12.7% and 9.2% higher incidence of tolerability discontinuation than raltegravir and ritonavir-boosted darunavir, respectively, primarily because of hyperbilirubinemia. For combined virologic efficacy and tolerability, ritonavir-boosted darunavir was superior to ritonavir-boosted atazanavir, and raltegravir was superior to both protease inhibitors. Antiretroviral resistance at the time of virologic failure was rare but more frequent with raltegravir.
LIMITATION - The trial was open-label, and ritonavir was not provided.
CONCLUSION - Over 2 years, all 3 regimens attained high and equivalent rates of virologic control. Tolerability of regimens containing raltegravir or ritonavir-boosted darunavir was superior to that of the ritonavir-boosted atazanavir regimen.
PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE - National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
BACKGROUND - Some investigators find a deficiency in IFN production from airway epithelial cells infected with human rhinovirus in asthma, but whether this abnormality occurs with other respiratory viruses is uncertain.
OBJECTIVE - To assess the effect of influenza A virus (IAV) and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection on IFN production and viral level in human bronchial epithelial cells (hBECs) from subjects with and without asthma.
METHODS - Primary-culture hBECs from subjects with mild to severe asthma (n = 11) and controls without asthma (hBECs; n = 7) were infected with live or ultraviolet-inactivated IAV (WS/33 strain), RSV (Long strain), or RSV (A/2001/2-20 strain) with multiplicity of infection 0.01 to 1. Levels of virus along with IFN-β and IFN-λ and IFN-stimulated gene expression (tracked by 2'-5'-oligoadenylate synthetase 1 and myxovirus (influenza virus) resistance 1 mRNA) were determined up to 72 hours postinoculation.
RESULTS - After IAV infection, viral levels were increased 2-fold in hBECs from asthmatic subjects compared with nonasthmatic control subjects (P < .05) and this increase occurred in concert with increased IFN-λ1 levels and no significant difference in IFNB1, 2'-5'-oligoadenylate synthetase 1, or myxovirus (influenza virus) resistance 1mRNA levels. After RSV infections, viral levels were not significantly increased in hBECs from asthmatic versus nonasthmatic subjects and the only significant difference between groups was a decrease in IFN-λ levels (P < .05) that correlated with a decrease in viral titer. All these differences were found only at isolated time points and were not sustained throughout the 72-hour infection period.
CONCLUSIONS - The results indicate that IAV and RSV control and IFN response to these viruses in airway epithelial cells is remarkably similar between subjects with and without asthma.
Copyright © 2014 American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
UNLABELLED - Identifying characteristics of the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) envelope that are effective in generating broad, protective antibodies remains a hurdle to HIV vaccine design. Emerging evidence of the development of broad and potent neutralizing antibodies in HIV-infected subjects suggests that founder and subsequent progeny viruses may express unique antigenic motifs that contribute to this developmental pathway. We hypothesize that over the course of natural infection, B cells are programmed to develop broad antibodies by exposure to select populations of emerging envelope quasispecies variants. To test this hypothesis, we identified two unrelated subjects whose antibodies demonstrated increasing neutralization breadth against a panel of HIV-1 isolates over time. Full-length functional env genes were cloned longitudinally from these subjects from months after infection through 2.6 to 5.8 years of infection. Motifs associated with the development of breadth in published, cross-sectional studies were found in both subjects. We compared the immunogenicity of envelope vaccines derived from time points obtained during and after broadening of neutralization activity within these subjects. Rabbits were coimmunized four times with selected multiple gp160 DNAs and gp140-trimeric envelope proteins. The affinity of the polyclonal response increased as a function of boosting. The most rapid and persistent neutralization of multiclade tier 1 viruses was elicited by envelopes that were circulating in plasma at time points prior to the development of 50% neutralization breadth in both human subjects. The breadth elicited in rabbits was not improved by exposure to later envelope variants. These data have implications for vaccine development in describing a target time point to identify optimal envelope immunogens.
IMPORTANCE - Vaccine protection against viral infections correlates with the presence of neutralizing antibodies; thus, vaccine components capable of generating potent neutralization are likely to be critical constituents in an effective HIV vaccine. However, vaccines tested thus far have elicited only weak antibody responses and very modest, waning protection. We hypothesized that B cells develop broad antibodies by exposure to the evolving viral envelope population and tested this concept using multiple envelopes from two subjects who developed neutralization breadth within a few years of infection. We compared different combinations of envelopes from each subject to identify the most effective immunogens and regimens. In each subject, use of HIV envelopes circulating during the early development and maturation of breadth generated more-potent antibodies that were modestly cross neutralizing. These data suggest a new approach to identifying envelope immunogens that may be more effective in generating protective antibodies in humans.
Copyright © 2014, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.
Mammalian cells possess mechanisms to detect and defend themselves from invading viruses. In the cytosol, the RIG-I-like receptors (RLRs), RIG-I (retinoic acid-inducible gene I; encoded by DDX58) and MDA5 (melanoma differentiation-associated gene 5; encoded by IFIH1) sense atypical RNAs associated with virus infection. Detection triggers a signalling cascade via the adaptor MAVS that culminates in the production of type I interferons (IFN-α and β; hereafter IFN), which are key antiviral cytokines. RIG-I and MDA5 are activated by distinct viral RNA structures and much evidence indicates that RIG-I responds to RNAs bearing a triphosphate (ppp) moiety in conjunction with a blunt-ended, base-paired region at the 5'-end (reviewed in refs 1, 2, 3). Here we show that RIG-I also mediates antiviral responses to RNAs bearing 5'-diphosphates (5'pp). Genomes from mammalian reoviruses with 5'pp termini, 5'pp-RNA isolated from yeast L-A virus, and base-paired 5'pp-RNAs made by in vitro transcription or chemical synthesis, all bind to RIG-I and serve as RIG-I agonists. Furthermore, a RIG-I-dependent response to 5'pp-RNA is essential for controlling reovirus infection in cultured cells and in mice. Thus, the minimal determinant for RIG-I recognition is a base-paired RNA with 5'pp. Such RNAs are found in some viruses but not in uninfected cells, indicating that recognition of 5'pp-RNA, like that of 5'ppp-RNA, acts as a powerful means of self/non-self discrimination by the innate immune system.