Document Detail

Production of new T cells by thymus in children: effect of HIV infection and antiretroviral therapy.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12149497     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
The decrease in the number of CD4(+) T cells during HIV infection is the result of both peripheral destruction of cells by the virus and inadequate replacement of these cells. Aging and HIV infection lead to lower production of new T cells by the thymus, and, therefore, a complete restoration of the immune system is not generally achieved in infected adults after antiretroviral therapy. Because children have a completely functional thymus, we addressed the effects of HIV-1 infection on the production of new T cells in vertically infected children and whether the decrease of viral load after therapy results in a restoration of thymic function. To analyze the thymic function, T-cell receptor rearrangement excision circles were measured by quantitative PCR. Our results indicate that HIV-infected children have lower T-cell receptor rearrangement excision circle levels than age-matched uninfected children, likely due to an inhibitory effect of HIV on thymic function. Additionally, in some patients, the decrease in viral load after retroviral therapy allows the generation of new T cells by the thymus, thus recovering the normal number of CD4 cells.
Rafael Correa; M Angeles Muñoz-Fernández
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Pediatric research     Volume:  52     ISSN:  0031-3998     ISO Abbreviation:  Pediatr. Res.     Publication Date:  2002 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2002-07-31     Completed Date:  2003-01-13     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0100714     Medline TA:  Pediatr Res     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  207-12     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Immunology, Hospital General Universitario Gregorio Marañón, Madrid, Spain.
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MeSH Terms
Anti-HIV Agents / therapeutic use*
CD4-CD8 Ratio
HIV Infections / drug therapy*,  immunology*
Longitudinal Studies
T-Lymphocytes / cytology*
Thymus Gland / cytology,  virology*
Viral Load
Reg. No./Substance:
0/Anti-HIV Agents

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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