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1.  Association of HIV Infection and HIV/HCV Coinfection With C-Reactive Protein Levels 
Objective
Inflammation is a potential mechanism to explain the accelerated atherosclerosis observed in HIV- and hepatitis C virus (HCV)–infected persons. We evaluated C-reactive protein (CRP) in HIV-infected and HIV/HCV-coinfected individuals in the era of effective antiretroviral (ARV) therapy.
Design
Cross-sectional study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV Infection (FRAM) cohort and controls from the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) study.
Methods
CRP levels were measured in 1135 HIV-infected participants from the FRAM cohort and 281 controls from the CARDIA study. The associations of HIV and HIV/HCV infection with CRP levels were estimated by multivariable linear regression.
Results
Compared with controls, HIV monoinfection was associated with an 88% higher CRP level in men (P < 0.0001) but with no difference in women (5%; P = 0.80) in multivariate analysis. CRP levels were not associated with ARV therapy, HIV RNA level, or CD4 cell count. Compared with controls, HIV/HCV coinfection was associated with a 41% lower CRP level in women (P = 0.012) but with no difference in men (+4%; P = 0.90). Among HIV-infected participants, HCV coinfection was associated with 50% lower CRP levels after multivariable analysis (P < 0.0001) in men and women. Greater visceral adipose tissue (VAT) and subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) were strongly associated with CRP levels. Among HIV- infected participants, CRP levels were 17% (P < 0.001) and 21% (P = 0.002) higher per doubling of VAT and SAT; among controls, CRP levels were 34% (P < 0.001) and 61% (P = 0.009) higher, respectively.
Conclusions
In the absence of HCV coinfection, HIV infection is associated with higher CRP levels in men. HCV coinfection is associated with lower CRP levels in men and women.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181685727
PMCID: PMC2561207  PMID: 18344877
cardiovascular disease; C-reactive protein; hepatitis C virus; HIV; inflammation
2.  Regional Adipose Tissue and Elevations in Serum Aminotransferases in HIV-Infected Individuals 
Background
The association of fat distribution with alanine aminotransferase (ALT) and aspartate aminotransferase (AST) elevations is not well-defined in HIV-infected individuals. Obesity is associated with hepatic steatosis, and ALT is a marker of steatosis in the general population.
Methods
Cross-sectional analysis of 1119 HIV-infected and 284 control subjects. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA testing determined HCV infection. Magnetic resonance imaging measured regional adipose tissue volume.
Results
After adjustment for demographic and lifestyle factors, visceral adipose tissue (VAT) was positively associated with ALT in HIV/HCV-coinfected subjects (+9.8%, 95% confidence interval [CI]: 2.8 to 17.6), HIV-monoinfected subjects (+8.0%, 95% CI: 4.2 to 12.1), and controls (+5.9%, 95% CI: 2.0 to 10.1). In contrast, lower trunk subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) was negatively associated with ALT in HIV/HCV-coinfected subjects (−14.3%, 95% CI: −24.7 to −4.2) and HIV-monoinfected subjects (−11.9%, 95% CI: −18.4 to −5.3); there was a trend toward an association in controls (−7.1%, 95% CI: −22.7 to 5.9). Estimated associations between regional adipose tissue and AST were small and did not reach statistical significance.
Conclusions
More VAT and less lower trunk SAT are associated with elevated ALT, which likely reflects the presence of steatosis. There was little association with AST. HCV infection and having more VAT or less lower trunk SAT are independently associated with elevated ALT in HIV infection. Study regarding the association between VAT, trunk SAT, HCV, and progression of steatosis and fibrosis is needed in HIV-infected individuals.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181685700
PMCID: PMC2776053  PMID: 18285711
adipose tissue; aminotransferase levels; hepatitis C virus; HIV; lipodystrophy
3.  Fat Distribution in Men With HIV Infection 
Objective
Both peripheral fat loss and central fat gain have been reported in HIV infection. Which changes are specific to HIV were determined by comparison with control subjects and the associations among different adipose tissue depots were determined.
Methods
Cross-sectional analysis of HIV-positive and control men from the study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV Infection. Lipoatrophy or lipohypertrophy was defined as concordance between participant report of change and examination. Regional adipose tissue volume was measured by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
Results
HIV-positive men reported more fat loss than controls in all peripheral and most central depots. Peripheral lipoatrophy was more frequent in HIV-positive men than in controls (38.3% vs. 4.6%, P < 0.001), whereas central lipohypertrophy was less frequent (40.2% vs. 55.9%, P = 0.001). Among HIV-positive men, the presence of central lipohypertrophy was not positively associated with peripheral lipoatrophy (odds ratio = 0.71, CI: 0.47 to 1.06, P = 0.10). On MRI, HIV-positive men with clinical peripheral lipoatrophy had less subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) in peripheral and central sites and less visceral adipose tissue (VAT) than HIV-positive men without peripheral lipoatrophy. HIV-positive men both with and without lipoatrophy had less SAT than controls, with legs and lower trunk more affected than upper trunk. Use of the antiretroviral drugs stavudine or indinavir was associated with less leg SAT but did not appear to be associated with more VAT; nevirapine use was associated with less VAT.
Conclusion
Both peripheral and central subcutaneous lipoatrophy was found in HIV infection. Lipoatrophy in HIV-positive men is not associated with reciprocally increased VAT.
PMCID: PMC3166344  PMID: 16186728
HIV infection; lipodystrophy; lipoatrophy; lipohypertrophy; visceral obesity; fat redistribution; body composition
4.  Fat Distribution in Women With HIV Infection 
Objective
Both peripheral fat loss and central fat gain have been reported in women with HIV infection. We determined the fat changes that are specific to HIV infection in women.
Methods
HIV-infected and control women from the study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV Infection (FRAM) were compared. Lipoatrophy or lipohypertrophy was defined as concordance between participant report of fat change and clinical examination. Whole-body magnetic resonance imaging measured regional adipose tissue volumes. The relationship among different adipose tissue depots was assessed. Factors associated with individual depots were analyzed using multivariate linear regression.
Results
HIV-infected women reported more fat loss than controls in all peripheral and most central depots. Peripheral lipoatrophy was more frequent in HIV-infected women than controls (28% vs. 4%, P < 0.001), whereas central lipohypertrophy was similar (62% vs. 63%). Among HIV-infected women, those with central lipohypertrophy were less likely to have peripheral lipoatrophy (odds ratio, 0.39; 95% confidence interval, 0.20 to 0.75, P = 0.006) than those without central lipohypertrophy. On magnetic resonance imaging, HIV-infected women with clinical peripheral lipoatrophy had less subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) in peripheral and central sites and less visceral adipose tissue (VAT) than HIV-infected women without peripheral lipoatrophy. Compared with controls, HIV-infected women had less SAT in the legs, regardless of the presence or absence of lipoatrophy. However, those without lipoatrophy had more VAT and upper trunk SAT than controls. Use of the antiretroviral drug stavudine was associated with less leg SAT but was not associated with VAT. The use of highly active antiretroviral therapy, however, was associated with more VAT.
Conclusions
Peripheral lipoatrophy occurs commonly in HIV-infected women but is not associated with reciprocally increased VAT or trunk fat.
doi:10.1097/01.qai.0000229996.75116.da
PMCID: PMC3166343  PMID: 16837863
HIV; lipodystrophy; lipoatrophy; lipohypertrophy; visceral obesity; fat redistribution; body composition
5.  Impaired Hepatitis C Virus-Specific T Cell Responses and Recurrent Hepatitis C Virus in HIV Coinfection 
PLoS Medicine  2006;3(12):e492.
Background
Hepatitis C virus (HCV)-specific T cell responses are critical for spontaneous resolution of HCV viremia. Here we examined the effect of a lymphotropic virus, HIV-1, on the ability of coinfected patients to maintain spontaneous control of HCV infection.
Methods and Findings
We measured T cell responsiveness by lymphoproliferation and interferon-γ ELISPOT in a large cohort of HCV-infected individuals with and without HIV infection. Among 47 HCV/HIV-1-coinfected individuals, spontaneous control of HCV was associated with more frequent HCV-specific lymphoproliferative (LP) responses (35%) compared to coinfected persons who exhibited chronic HCV viremia (7%, p = 0.016), but less frequent compared to HCV controllers who were not HIV infected (86%, p = 0.003). Preservation of HCV-specific LP responses in coinfected individuals was associated with a higher nadir CD4 count (r2 = 0.45, p < 0.001) and the presence and magnitude of the HCV-specific CD8+ T cell interferon-γ response (p = 0.0014). During long-term follow-up, recurrence of HCV viremia occurred in six of 25 coinfected individuals with prior control of HCV, but in 0 of 16 HIV-1-negative HCV controllers (p = 0.03, log rank test). In these six individuals with recurrent HCV viremia, the magnitude of HCV viremia following recurrence inversely correlated with the CD4 count at time of breakthrough (r = −0.94, p = 0.017).
Conclusions
These results indicate that HIV infection impairs the immune response to HCV—including in persons who have cleared HCV infection—and that HIV-1-infected individuals with spontaneous control of HCV remain at significant risk for a second episode of HCV viremia. These findings highlight the need for repeat viral RNA testing of apparent controllers of HCV infection in the setting of HIV-1 coinfection and provide a possible explanation for the higher rate of HCV persistence observed in this population.
HIV infection impairs the immune response to HCV. Even individuals who have cleared HCV infection remain at significant risk for a second episode of HCV viremia.
Editors' Summary
Background.
Because of shared transmission routes (contaminated needles, contaminated blood products, and, to a lesser extent, unprotected sex), a large proportion of HIV-infected individuals (estimates range between 25% and 33%) are also infected with the hepatitis C virus (HCV). In most but not all individuals infected with HCV, the virus infection is chronic and causes liver disease that can eventually lead to liver failure. Disease progress is slow; it often takes decades until infected individuals develop serious liver disease. In people infected with both HCV and HIV, however, liver disease caused by HCV often appears sooner and progresses faster. As highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) and prophylaxis of opportunistic infections increase the life span of persons living with HIV, HCV-related liver disease has become a major cause of hospital admissions and deaths among HIV-infected persons.
Why Was This Study Done?
A sizable minority of people who are infected with HCV manage to control the virus and never get liver disease, and scientists have found that these people somehow mounted a strong immune response against the hepatitis C virus. CD4+ T cells, the very immune cells that are infected and destroyed by HIV, play an important role in this immune response. The goal of the present study was to better understand how infection with HIV compromises the specific immune response to HCV and thereby the control of HCV disease progression.
What Did the Researchers Do and Find?
The researchers recruited four groups of patients, 94 in total, all of whom were infected with HCV. Two groups comprised patients who were infected with HIV as well as HCV, with either high or undetectable levels of HCV (30 patients in each group). The two other groups included patients not infected with HIV, either with high or undetectable levels of HCV (17 patients in each group). The researchers focused on the individuals who, despite coinfection with HIV, were able to control their HCV infection. They found that those individuals managed to maintain relatively high levels of CD4+ T cells that specifically recognize HCV. However, a quarter of these patients (six out of 25) failed to keep HCV levels down for the entire observation period of up to 2.5 years; their blood levels of HCV rose substantially, most likely due to recurrence of the previously suppressed virus (the researchers could not be certain that none of the patients had become infected again after a new exposure to HCV-contaminated blood, but there was no evidence that they had engaged in risky behavior). The rise of HCV levels in the blood of the relapsed patients coincided with a drop in overall CD4+ T cell numbers. Following relapse in these individuals, HCV did not return to undetectable levels during the study. During the same period none of the 16 HIV-uninfected people with controlled HCV infection experienced a recurrence of detectable HCV.
What Do These Findings Mean?
Despite the relatively small numbers of patients, these results suggest that recurrence of HCV after initial control of the virus is more likely in people who are coinfected with HIV, and that HCV control is lost when CD4+ T cell counts fall. This is one more reason to test all HIV-positive patients for HCV coinfection. Coinfected patients, even those who seem to be controlling HCV and would not automatically receive HCV treatment, should be regularly tested for a rise of HCV levels. In addition, maintaining CD4+ T cells at a high level might be particularly important for those patients, which means that doctors might consider starting HAART therapy earlier than is generally recommended for HIV-infected individuals. Additional studies are needed to support these recommendations, however, especially as this study did not follow the patients long enough to determine the consequences of the observed loss of control of HCV.
Additional Information.
Please access these Web sites via the online version of this summary at http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.0030492.
AIDS Treatment Data Network factsheet on HIV/HCV coinfection
US CDC factsheet on HIV/HCV coinfection
American Liver Foundation, information on HIV and HCV
MedlinePlus pages on HCV
doi:10.1371/journal.pmed.0030492
PMCID: PMC1705826  PMID: 17194190
6.  Intermuscular Adipose Tissue and Metabolic Associations in HIV Infection 
Obesity (Silver Spring, Md.)  2010;19(2):283-291.
Intermuscular adipose tissue (IMAT) is associated with metabolic abnormalities similar to those associated with visceral adipose tissue (VAT). Increased IMAT has been found in obese human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected women. We hypothesized that IMAT, like VAT, would be similar or increased in HIV-infected persons compared with healthy controls, despite decreases in subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) found in HIV infection. In the second FRAM (Study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV infection) exam, we studied 425 HIV-infected subjects and 211 controls (from the Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults study) who had regional AT and skeletal muscle (SM) measured by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Multivariable linear regression identified factors associated with IMAT and its association with metabolites. Total IMAT was 51% lower in HIV-infected participants compared with controls (P = 0.003). The HIV effect was attenuated after multivariable adjustment (to −28%, P < 0.0001 in men and −3.6%, P = 0.70 in women). Higher quantities of leg SAT, upper-trunk SAT, and VAT were associated with higher IMAT in HIV-infected participants, with weaker associations in controls. Stavudine use was associated with lower IMAT and SAT, but showed little relationship with VAT. In multivariable analyses, regional IMAT was associated with insulin resistance and triglycerides (TGs). Contrary to expectation, IMAT is not increased in HIV infection; after controlling for demographics, lifestyle, VAT, SAT, and SM, HIV+ men have lower IMAT compared with controls, whereas values for women are similar. Stavudine exposure is associated with both decreased IMAT and SAT, suggesting that IMAT shares cellular origins with SAT.
doi:10.1038/oby.2010.115
PMCID: PMC3731045  PMID: 20539305
7.  Clinical Liver Disease Progression Among Hepatitis C-Infected Drug Users With CD4 Cell Count Less Than 200 Cells/mm3 Is More Pronounced Among Women Than Men 
Open Forum Infectious Diseases  2015;3(1):ofv214.
The rate of clinical liver disease progression in this cohort of HCV mono-infected and HIV/HCV co-infected individuals was higher than previously reported. Risk of clinical liver disease progression was associated with level of immune suppression, and was more pronounced in women.
Background. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection is a leading cause of liver-related morbidity and mortality in the United States, and injection drug users are at particularly high risk.
Methods. This prospective observational cohort study assessed the rate of, and risk factors for, clinical liver disease progression in a cohort of HCV monoinfected and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/HCV coinfected drug users using unadjusted and multivariate Cox proportional hazards regression analyses.
Results. Of 564 subjects including 421 (75%) with HIV/HCV coinfection and 143 with HCV monoinfection, 55 (10%) had clinical liver disease progression during follow-up with a rate of 25.3 events per 1000 person-years. In unadjusted analysis, there was an interaction between sex and HIV status. In sex-stratified multivariate analysis, HIV/HCV-coinfected women with CD4 <200 cells/mm3 had 9.99 times the risk of liver disease progression as HCV-monoinfected women (confidence interval [CI], 1.84–54.31; P = .008), and white women had a trend towards increased risk of liver disease progression compared with non-white women (hazard ratio, 2.84; CI, .93–8.68; P = .07). Human immunodeficiency virus/HCV-coinfected men with CD4 <200 cells/mm3 had 2.86 times the risk of liver disease progression as HCV-monoinfected men (CI, 1.23-6.65; P = .01).
Conclusions. Hepatitis C virus-monoinfected and HIV/HCV-coinfected drug users had high rates of clinical liver disease progression. In those with HIV infection, liver disease progression was associated with advanced immune suppression. This effect was strikingly more pronounced in women than in men.
doi:10.1093/ofid/ofv214
PMCID: PMC4777902  PMID: 26955643
HCV; HIV; drug abuse; drug user
8.  Clinicopathologic correlates of hepatitis C virus in brain: A pilot study 
Journal of neurovirology  2008;14(1):17-27.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) has been detected in the brain tissues of 10 individuals reported to date; it is unclear what clinical factors are associated with this, and with what frequency it occurs. Accordingly, a pilot analysis utilizing reverse transcriptase–polymerase chain reaction (RT- PCR) to detect and sequence HCV in premortem plasma and postmortem brain and liver from 20 human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected and 10 HIV-naïve individuals was undertaken. RNA encoding the first 126 amino acids of the HCV E1 envelope protein and the majority of the E1 signal sequence was analyzed in parallel with an 80-base-long segment of the 5′ untranslated region (UTR). Liver HCV was detected only in subjects with premortem HCV viremia (10 HIV-infected and 3 HIV-naïve). Brain HCV was detected in 6/10 HCV/HIV-coinfected and 1/3 HCV-monoinfected subjects. In the setting of HIV, the magnitude of plasma HCV load did not correlate with the presence of brain HCV. However, coinfected patients with brain HCV were more often off antiretroviral therapy and tended to have higher plasma HIV loads than those with HCV restricted to liver. Furthermore, premortem cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analysis revealed that HCV/HIV-coinfected patients with brain HCV had detectable CSF HIV, whereas those without brain HCV had undetectable CSF HIV loads (P = .0205). Neuropsychologic tests showed a trend for hierarchical impairment of abstraction/executive functioning in HIV/HCV coinfection, with mean T scores for HIV monoinfected patients 43.2 (7.3), for liver-only HCV 39.5 (9.0), and for those with HCV in brain and liver 33.2 (5.1) (P = .0927). Predominant brain HCV sequences did not match those of the plasma or liver in 4 of the 6 coinfected patients analyzed. We conclude that in the setting of HIV/HCV coinfection, brain HCV is a common phenomenon unrelated to the magnitude of HCV viremia, but related to active HIV disease and detectable CSF HIV. Furthermore, there is sequence evidence of brain compartmentalization. Differences in abstraction/executive function of HCV/HIV coinfected patients compared to HIV monoinfected warrant further studies to determine if neuropsychiatric effects are predicated upon brain infection.
doi:10.1080/13550280701708427
PMCID: PMC2729451  PMID: 18300072
brain; cognition; hepatitis C virus; HIV
9.  Adipose Tissue and Metabolic Factors Associated with Steatosis in HIV/HCV coinfection: Histology versus Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy 
Background
Hepatic steatosis is common in persons with HIV and hepatitis C virus (HCV); yet biopsy measurement of steatosis is prone to sampling error. We compared magnetic resonance spectroscopy (MRS) measurement of steatosis to histology in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients, and explored the associated adipose tissue and metabolic factors.
Methods
Cross-sectional analysis of 42 HIV/HCV-coinfected men and women. Logistic regression analysis identified factors [MRI-measured visceral adipose tissue (VAT) and abdominal subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) and Homeostasis Model Assessment (HOMA) estimated insulin resistance] associated with histologic steatosis (≥5% of hepatocytes with fat) and MRS steatosis (≥5% of hepatic fat).
Results
MRS steatosis was strongly associated with histologic steatosis, when measured continuously [odds ratio: 10.2 per doubling of MRS-measured hepatic fat; 95% confidence interval (CI):2.9, 69.3] and dichotomously (Kappa coefficient=0.52; p=0.0007). Four of the 10 with MRS-measured steatosis did not have histologic steatosis; 3 of 9 with histologic steatosis did not have MRS-measured steatosis (67% sensitivity; 88% specificity). Associations of VAT and abdominal SAT were associated with both histologic and MRS-measured steatosis. Insulin resistance was also associated with both.
Conclusions
When compared to histology, MRS was similarly associated with adipose tissue and metabolic factors. MRS is a useful non-invasive alternative to biopsy in HIV/HCV coinfection.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181e1d963
PMCID: PMC2943991  PMID: 20512045
Steatosis; Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy; HIV; HCV; Adipose tissue; Insulin Resistance
10.  The Associations of Regional Adipose Tissue with Lipid and Lipoprotein Levels in HIV-infected Men 
Background
HIV infection and antiretroviral therapy are associated with dyslipidemia, but the association between regional adipose tissue depots and lipid levels is not defined.
Methods
The association of MRI-measured visceral (VAT) and regional subcutaneous adipose tissue (SAT) volume with fasting lipid parameters was analyzed by multivariable linear regression in 737 HIV-infected and 145 control men from the study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV Infection (FRAM).
Results
HIV-infected men had higher median triglycerides (TG) (170mg/dl vs. 107mg/dl, p<0.0001), lower high density lipoprotein (HDL-C) (38mg/dl vs. 46mg/dl, p<0.0001) and lower low density lipoprotein (LDL-C) (105mg/dl vs. 125mg/dl, p<0.0001) than controls. After adjustment, greater VAT was associated with higher TG and lower HDL-C in both HIV-infected and control men, while greater leg SAT was associated with lower TG in HIV-infected men with a similar trend in controls. More upper trunk SAT was associated with higher LDL-C and lower HDL-C in controls, while more lower trunk SAT was associated with higher TG in controls. After adjustment, HIV infection remained strongly associated (p<0.0001) with higher TG (+76%, CI: 53, 103), lower LDL-C (−19%, CI: −25,−12), and lower HDL-C (−18%, CI: −22,−12).
Conclusions
HIV-infected men are more likely than controls to have higher TG and lower HDL-C, which promote atherosclerosis, but also lower LDL-C. Less leg SAT and more VAT are important factors associated with high TG and low HDL-C in HIV-infected men. The reduced leg SAT in HIV-infected men with lipoatrophy places them at increased risk for pro-atherogenic dyslipidemia.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0b013e31816d9ba1
PMCID: PMC3156607  PMID: 18360291
11.  Association of HIV Infection, Hepatitis C Virus Infection, and Metabolic Factors With Liver Stiffness Measured by Transient Elastography 
The Journal of Infectious Diseases  2013;208(11):1776-1783.
Background. Few studies have examined the relationship of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) monoinfection and its associated perturbations with liver fibrosis.
Methods. Using multivariable linear regression, we examined the demographic, behavioral, metabolic and viral factors associated with transient elastography–measured liver stiffness in 314 participants (165 HIV positive/hepatitis C virus [HCV] negative, 78 HIV positive/HCV positive, 14 HIV negative/HCV positive, 57 HIV negative/HCV negative) in the Women's Interagency HIV Study.
Results. Compared with HIV negative/HCV negative women, HIV positive/HCV positive women had higher median liver stiffness values (7.1 vs 4.4 kPa; P < .001); HIV positive/HCV negative and HIV negative/HCV negative women had similar liver stiffness values (both 4.4 kPa; P = .94). HIV/HCV coinfection remained associated with higher liver stiffness values (74% higher; 95% confidence interval [CI], 49–104) even after multivariable adjustment. Among HCV positive women, waist circumference (per 10-cm increase) was associated with 18% (95% CI, 7.5%–30%) higher liver stiffness values after multivariable adjustment; waist circumference showed little association among HIV positive/HCV negative or HIV negative/HCV negative women. Among HIV positive/HCV negative women, history of AIDS (13%; 95% CI, 4% –27%) and HIV RNA (7.3%; 95% CI, 1.59%–13.3%, per 10-fold increase) were associated with greater liver stiffness.
Conclusions. HCV infection but not HIV infection is associated with greater liver stiffness when infected women are compared with those with neither infection. Our finding that waist circumference, a marker of central obesity, is associated with greater liver stiffness in HIV/HCV-coinfected but not HIV-monoinfected or women with neither infection suggests that in the absence of HCV-associated liver injury the adverse effects of obesity are lessened.
doi:10.1093/infdis/jit357
PMCID: PMC3814832  PMID: 23901097
HIV; HCV; liver fibrosis; transient elastography; obesity; women
12.  Risk of Echocardiographic Pulmonary Hypertension in Individuals with Human Immunodeficiency Virus–Hepatitis C Virus Coinfection 
Rationale: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is a risk factor for pulmonary hypertension (PH). Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection may have unique or synergistic effects on the pulmonary vasculature, but the prevalence and risk factors for PH in HIV-HCV coinfected persons are not known.
Objectives: To define the prevalence of echocardiographic PH in a cohort of patients with HIV-HCV coinfection, to compare this estimate with the reported prevalence of PH among those with HIV infection alone, and to identify potential risk factors for PH in coinfected individuals.
Methods: We performed a retrospective study of HIV-HCV coinfected patients followed at our institution from 2003 to 2012 with evidence of HCV infection (positive HCV antibody, measurable HCV ribonucleic acid viral load, and/or genotype) within 6 months of transthoracic echocardiogram. PH was defined by an estimated pulmonary artery systolic pressure (PASP) of greater than or equal to 40 mm Hg or more than moderate right ventricular dysfunction. We excluded those diagnosed with cirrhosis, left ventricular ejection fraction less than 50%, or more than moderate aortic or mitral valve disease.
Measurements and Main Results: Sixty-eight patients were included, and 43 had adequate estimates of PASP. The median (interquartile range) age was 52 (48–57) years, and 45 (67%) were men. Eight (19%) had PH, and three (7%) had more than moderate right ventricular dysfunction. After age and sex adjustment, interferon (IFN)-based HCV treatment was associated with higher PASP (β, 6.00 mm Hg; 95% confidence interval, 0.09–11.90; P = 0.047) and with the risk of PH (odds ratio, 5.65; 95% confidence interval, 1.07–29.93; P = 0.042). These associations persisted after adjustment for comorbidities but were attenuated by adjustment for duration of HCV diagnosis.
Conclusions: The prevalence of echocardiographic PH may be higher in HIV-HCV coinfected individuals than in those with HIV monoinfection. IFN-based HCV treatment and time since HCV diagnosis were associated with the development of PH as assessed by echocardiography. Further studies are needed to examine HIV-HCV coinfection, HCV treatment, and duration of infection as possible causes of pulmonary vascular disease.
doi:10.1513/AnnalsATS.201405-225OC
PMCID: PMC4298977  PMID: 25375659
hepatitis C; human immunodeficiency virus; pulmonary hypertension; echocardiography; interferon
13.  Hepatitis C virus infection and spontaneous clearance in HTLV-1 and HIV co-infected patients in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil 
Background
While 20–40% of patients with hepatitis C virus (HCV) monoinfection will spontaneously clear the virus, less is known regarding clearance with coinfections. HCV, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and human T-cell lymphotrophic virus 1 and 2 (HTLV-1/2) coinfection occurs due to shared routes of transmission and is prevalent in Brazil.
Objectives
To compare the proportion of patients who have spontaneously cleared HCV in patients with HCV monoinfection to patients coinfected by HCV/HIV, or HCV/HIV/HTLV-1.
Methods
Using medical records from two clinics in Salvador, Brazil, including demographic data and serological markers of HCV, HIV and HTLV-I/II, cross-sectional data was obtained from 197 patients. Patients who were anti-HCV positive and HCV RNA negative, and who did not receive HCV treatment were defined as having cleared infection.
Results
Nineteen patients (9.5%) showed evidence of spontaneous HCV clearance; with clearance in 9 of 108 (8.3%) patients in the HCV monoinfected group, 5 of 68 (7.4%) patients with HCV/HIV, and 5 of 21 (23.8%) patients with HCV/HIV/HTLV. Demographic data were not associated with HCV clearance status. Patients coinfected with both HIV and HTLV-1 had increased odds (5.50; 95% CI 1.00, 30.17) of spontaneous clearance of HCV compared with patients who were HIV negative or of unknown HIV status.
Conclusion
Our study found that patients coinfected with HIV and HTLV-1 were more likely to spontaneously clear hepatitis C virus than patients with HIV/HCV or HCV alone. The effects of HTLV coinfection on the immune response of such patients may be associated with these findings.
doi:10.1016/j.bjid.2015.06.007
PMCID: PMC4592833  PMID: 26254690
HTLV-1; HIV; Hepatitis C; Brazil; Spontaneous HCV clearance
14.  A Comparison of Seminal Hepatitis C Virus (HCV) RNA Levels During Recent and Chronic HCV Infection in HIV-Infected and HIV-Uninfected Individuals 
The Journal of Infectious Diseases  2014;211(5):736-743.
Background. We aimed to characterize seminal hepatitis C virus (HCV) RNA dynamics in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–positive men with acute HCV infection given its potential role in sexual transmission of HCV.
Methods. Men with acute HCV infection (duration, ≤12 months) or chronic HCV infection (duration, >12 months) were prospectively recruited. Paired semen and blood samples were assayed for HCV RNA levels. Results were analyzed using χ2, Fisher exact, Mann–Whitney U, and Kruskal–Wallis tests.
Results. Eighteen men (27.3%) had acute HCV and HIV coinfection, 22 (33.3%) had chronic HCV infection and HIV coinfection, and 26 (39.4%) had chronic HCV monoinfection. HCV RNA was detected in semen specimens from 29 of 66 men (43.9%). The median HCV RNA level in blood was 4.0 log IU/mL higher than that in semen. HCV RNA levels were correlated in semen and blood (r2 = 0.142). Neither HIV positivity nor acute HCV infection was associated with an increased frequency of seminal HCV RNA detection. Among men with acute HCV and HIV coinfection, the median HCV RNA level in blood specimens from those with seminal HCV RNA was higher than that in blood specimens from those without seminal HCV RNA (P = .001). Seminal HCV RNA was detected in ≥1 sample for 26 of 35 men (74.3%) attending follow up.
Conclusions. HCV RNA was detected in semen during both acute and chronic HCV infection. This was unaffected by HIV positivity or the phase of HCV infection. Elevated seminal HCV RNA levels could contribute to sexual transmission of HCV, but other factors, including high-risk behaviors, may be the main drivers for HCV transmission in HIV-infected individuals.
doi:10.1093/infdis/jiu550
PMCID: PMC4334806  PMID: 25293369
hepatitis C virus; HIV; sexual transmission of HCV; semen; men who have sex with men
15.  Risk of Hip Fracture Associated with Hepatitis C Virus Infection and Hepatitis C/HIV Coinfection 
Hepatology (Baltimore, Md.)  2012;56(5):1688-1698.
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection has been associated with reduced bone mineral density, but its association with fracture rates is unknown, particularly in the setting of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) coinfection. Our objectives were to determine whether persons with HCV infection alone are at increased risk for hip fracture compared to uninfected individuals and to examine if the risk of hip fracture is higher among HCV/HIV-coinfected persons compared to those with HCV alone, those with HIV alone, and those uninfected with either virus. We conducted a cohort study in 36,950 HCV/HIV-coinfected, 276,901HCV-monoinfected, 95,827 HIV-monoinfected, and 3,110,904 HCV/HIV-uninfected persons within the U.S. Medicaid populations of California, Florida, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania (1999–2005). Incidence rates of hip fracture were lowest among uninfected persons (1.29 events/1000 person-years), increased with the presence of either HIV infection (1.95 events/1000 person-years) or HCV infection (2.69 events/1000 person-years), and were highest among HCV/HIV-coinfected individuals (3.06 events/1000 person-years). HCV/HIV coinfection was associated with an increased relative hazard (adjusted hazard ratio [95% confidence interval]) of hip fracture compared to HCV-monoinfected (1.38 [1.25–1.53]), HIV-monoinfected (females: 1.76 [1.44–2.16]; males: 1.36 [1.20–1.55]), and uninfected persons (females: 2.65 [2.21–3.17]; males: 2.20 [1.97–2.47]). HCV monoinfection was associated with an increased risk of hip fracture compared to uninfected individuals, and the relative increase was highest in the youngest age groups (females, 18–39 years: 3.56 [2.93–4.32]; males, 18–39 years: 2.40 [2.02–2.84]).
Conclusion
Among Medicaid enrollees, HCV/HIV coinfection was associated with increased rates of hip fracture compared to HCV-monoinfected, HIV-monoinfected, and HCV/HIV-uninfected persons. HCV-monoinfected patients had an increased risk of hip fracture compared to uninfected individuals.
doi:10.1002/hep.25866
PMCID: PMC3433632  PMID: 22619086
Hepatitis C virus; HCV; HIV; fracture; coinfection
16.  Effectiveness of HCV core antigen and RNA quantification in HCV-infected and HCV/HIV-1-coinfected patients 
BMC Infectious Diseases  2014;14:577.
Background
The measurement of hepatitis C virus core antigen (HCV-coreAg) has been shown to be an indicator of active HCV infection. The aim of the present study was 1) to investigate the stability and effectiveness of HCV-coreAg and HCV-RNA quantification in HCV infection with or without HIV-1 coinfection, 2) to explore the association between the HCV-coreAg/HCV-RNA (Ag/RNA) ratio and the immune status in chronic HCV/HIV-1-coinfected patients.
Methods
A longitudinal investigation comprised of 227 HCV-monoinfected (n = 129) and HCV/HIV-1-coinfected (n = 98) patients was initiated in August 2009, and 139 (73 with HCV monoinfection and 66 with HCV/HIV-1 coinfection) were followed up in August 2012. Both HCV core antigen and HCV RNA quantification were determined on this cryopreserved plasma. HCV core antigen and HCV RNA quantification were performed subsequently. In addition, an in vitro experiment investigating the possibility of degradation of HCV components (core antigen and RNA) were conducted.
Results
Significant and stable correlations (p < 0.001) were observed both in chronic HCV-monoinfected and HCV/HIV-1-coinfected patients over the 3-year observation. Coinfected patients with immunocompromised condition had a significantly higher (p < 0.05) Ag/RNA ratios than those patients with immunocompetent condition both at two time points (2009 and 2012). Moreover, the Ag/RNA ratios were negatively correlated with CD4+ T-cell counts (p < 0.001). An in vitro experiment investigated the possibility of the slower degradation of HCV particles under HIV-related immunocompromised condition was conducted and the data demonstrated that the Ag/RNA ratios were significantly higher in HIV-1-positive plasma than in healthy plasma (p = 0.005) in this study.
Conclusions
Our longitudinal study indicated that the HCV-coreAg presented comparable dynamics over time as HCV RNA in chronic HCV-infected patients. Meanwhile, the HCV-coreAg/HCV-RNA ratio was closely associated with immune status in HCV/HIV-1-coinfected patients.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12879-014-0577-1) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s12879-014-0577-1
PMCID: PMC4225041  PMID: 25371245
CD4+ T-cell counts; Coinfection; HCV-coreAg; HCV-RNA; HCV/HIV-1; Ratio
17.  The Effect of HIV Viral Control on the Incidence of Hepatocellular Carcinoma in Veterans with Hepatitis C and HIV Coinfection 
Background
HIV increases the risk of progression to hepatic fibrosis and cirrhosis among individuals coinfected with hepatitis C virus (HCV). However, the impact of HIV-related immune suppression on the risk of hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) is currently unknown.
Methods
We used the VA HIV Clinical Case Registry to identify patients with HIV infection between 1985 and 2010 and HCV coinfection (positive HCV RNA or genotype test) between 1995 and 2010. The outcome was incident HCC as indicated by ICD-9 code (87% positive predictive value). Patients with HCV monoinfection were included as a comparison group for HCC incidence. Age-adjusted HCC incidence rates were calculated for the coinfected cohort and HCV monoinfected cohort. Cox proportional hazards models were used to determine hazard ratios (HR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for each risk factor on the time to HCC diagnosis in the coinfected cohort.
Results
There were 66,991 veterans with HIV; 8,563 had at least one positive HCV RNA test, and 234 of these developed HCC. The overall age-adjusted incidence rate of HCC in monoinfected patients was 2.99/1000 PY vs. 4.44/1000 PY in coinfected patients. In patients with coinfection, presence of cirrhosis (HR=4.88; 95%CI: 3.30–7.21), HIV diagnosis >2002 (HR=4.65; 95%CI: 2.70–8.02), and a recent low CD4+ cell count <200 (HR=1.71; 95%CI: 1.20–2.45) were associated with an increased risk for HCC.
Conclusions
The risk of HCC in HCV-HIV coinfected veteran men was higher than HCV monoinfection. Diagnosis of cirrhosis and low recent CD4+ cell count were the most important predictors of developing HCC in this group.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0000000000000494
PMCID: PMC4334674  PMID: 25559606
Hepatitis C virus; coinfection; hepatocellular carcinoma; HIV-related immune suppression
18.  Evaluation of endothelial function and subclinical atherosclerosis in association with hepatitis C virus in HIV-infected patients: a cross-sectional study 
BMC Infectious Diseases  2011;11:265.
Background
Relationship of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) in HIV-infected patients remains controversial. We evaluated endothelial function and subclinical atherosclerosis in HIV-infected patients with and without HCV.
Methods
Flow-mediated dilatation (FMD) of the brachial artery and circulating levels of cell adhesion molecules (CAM) were measured in HCV/HIV-coinfected and HIV-monoinfected patients. Subclinical atherosclerosis was assessed by carotid intima-media thickness (cIMT).
Results
63 (31%) HCV/HIV-coinfected and 138 (69%) HIV-monoinfected patients were included. Median soluble vascular CAM-1 (sVCAM-1) and intercellular CAM-1 (sICAM-1) levels were significantly higher in HIV/HCV-coinfected patients (P < 0.001 for both cases). Median (interquartile range) FMD was 6.21% (2.86-9.62) in HCV/HIV-coinfected and 5.54% (2.13-9.13) in HIV-monoinfected patients (P = 0.37). Adjustment for variables associated with HCV and FMD disclosed similar results. FMD correlated inversely with cIMT and age. Carotid IMT did not differ between HCV/HIV-coinfected and HIV-monoinfected patients in unadjusted (0.61 [0.55-0.65] mm vs 0.60 [0.53-0.72] mm; P = 0.39) or adjusted analyses.
Conclusion
HCV infection was associated with higher levels of sICAM-1 and sVCAM-1, but no evidence of increased subclinical atherosclerosis was found when endothelial function was evaluated through FMD, or when assessing the cIMT.
doi:10.1186/1471-2334-11-265
PMCID: PMC3198698  PMID: 21967471
19.  Regional fat deposition and cardiovascular risk in HIV infection: The FRAM study 
AIDS care  2011;23(8):929-938.
HIV-infected individuals are at increased risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) and lipodystrophy, but the relationship between regional adipose tissue (AT) depots and CVD risk is not well-described. We determined regional AT volumes and CVD risk in an analysis of 586 HIV-infected and 280 control FRAM study subjects using whole-body magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and the Framingham Risk Score (FRS). Median FRS and FRS >10% were higher in HIV than control men (4.7% vs. 3.7%, p=0.0002; 16% vs. 4%, p<0.0001). HIV and control women had similarly-low FRS (1.1% vs. 1.2%, p=0.91). In controls, total AT and all regional AT depots showed strong positive correlations with FRS (p<0.001) in men, and weaker positive correlations in women. Greater visceral AT (VAT) and lower leg subcutaneous AT (SAT) volumes were associated with elevated FRS in HIV subjects, with a trend for upper trunk SAT. Controls in the lowest quartile of leg SAT had the lowest FRS (1.5%), whereas HIV with similarly-low leg SAT had the highest FRS (4.0%, p<0.001 vs. controls). Increased VAT is associated with CVD risk, but the risk is higher in HIV-infected individuals relative to controls at every level of VAT. Peripheral lipoatrophy (as measured by leg SAT) is associated with striking increased CVD risk in HIV-infected patients, even after controlling for VAT, whereas low leg SAT is associated with low CVD risk in controls.
doi:10.1080/09540121.2010.543885
PMCID: PMC3249238  PMID: 21767228
HIV; fat redistribution; lipoatrophy; visceral fat; cardiovascular risk
20.  Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) after Liver Transplantation in HIV/ HCV Coinfected versus HIV/non-HCV Infected Recipients: Results from the NIH Multi-Site Study 
Hepatitis C virus (HCV) and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) are both associated with chronic kidney disease (CKD), a major complication after orthotopic liver transplantation (OLT). The aim of this study was to assess predictors of post-OLT CKD in HIV/HCV coinfected versus HIV/non-HCV infected recipients.
METHODS
Data from the NIH Solid Organ Transplantation in HIV: Multi-Site Study of 116 OLT recipients (35 HIV/non-HCV and 81 HIV/HCV co-infected) from 2003 to 2010 were analyzed for pre-transplant CKD prevalence (estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) < 60 ml/min for ≥ 3 months) and incidence of CKD up to 3 years post-transplant. Proportional hazards models were performed to assess predictors of post-transplant CKD. A contemporaneous cohort of HCV monoinfected transplant recipients from the SRTR database was also analyzed.
RESULTS
Median age at transplant was 48 years, serum creatinine was 1.1 mg/dl, and median eGFR was 77 ml/min. Thirty-four patients had suspected pre-transplant CKD; 20 of these (59%) had post-transplant CKD. Among the 82 patients without pre-transplant CKD (26 HIV/non-HCV and 56 HIV/HCV coinfected), the cumulative incidence of stage 3 CKD at 3 years post-OLT was 62% (55% HIV/non-HCV versus 65% HIV/HCV coinfected) and stage 4/5 CKD was 8% (0% HIV/non-HCV versus 12% HIV/HCV coinfected). In multivariate proportional hazards analysis, older age (HR 1.05 per year; p 0.03) and CD4 count (HR 0.90 per 50 cells/µL; p 0.01) were significant predictors of CKD. HCV coinfection was significantly associated with stage 4/5 CKD (HR 10.8; p 0.03) after adjustment for age on multivariate analysis. The cumulative incidence of stage 4/5 CKD was significantly higher in HIV/HCV coinfected patients compared to HIV/non-HCV and HCV monoinfected transplant recipients (p=0.001).
CONCLUSIONS
CKD occurs frequently in HIV infected transplant recipients. Predictors of post-transplant CKD include older age, and lower post-transplant CD4 count. HCV co-infection is associated with a higher incidence of stage 4/5 CKD.
doi:10.1002/lt.23648
PMCID: PMC3667971  PMID: 23512786
21.  HIV Coinfection With Hepatitis C Virus: Evolving Epidemiology and Treatment Paradigms 
Chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection has become a major threat to the survival of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–infected persons in areas where antiretroviral therapy is available. In coinfection, viral eradication has been difficult to attain, and HCV therapy is underused. Novel therapies may be particularly beneficial for this population, yet studies lag behind those for HCV monoinfection. Increasingly, incident HCV among HIV-infected men who have sex with men is associated with sexual risk behavior further research should be performed to refine understanding of the causal mechanism of this association. The phenomenon of aggressive hepatic fibrogenesis when HIV infection precedes HCV acquisition requires longer-term observation to ensure optimal timing of HCV therapy. Medical management in coinfection will be improved by enhancing HCV detection, with annual serologic testing, screening with HCV RNA to detect acute infection, and HIV testing of HCV-infected individuals; by addressing HCV earlier in coinfected persons; and by universal consideration for HCV therapy. HCV drug trials in individuals coinfected with HIV should be expedited. HIV/HCV coinfection remains a growing and evolving epidemic; new developments in therapeutics and improved care models offer promise.
doi:10.1093/cid/cis367
PMCID: PMC3491862  PMID: 22715212
22.  Characterization of Cross-Reactive CD8+ T-Cell Recognition of HLA-A2-Restricted HIV-Gag (SLYNTVATL) and HCV-NS5b (ALYDVVSKL) Epitopes in Individuals Infected with Human Immunodeficiency and Hepatitis C Viruses ▿  
Journal of Virology  2010;85(1):254-263.
The immunologic mechanisms underlying the faster progression of hepatitis C virus (HCV) disease in the presence of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) coinfection are not clearly understood. T-cell cross-reactivity between HCV and influenza virus-specific epitopes has been associated with rapid progression of HCV disease (S. Urbani, B. Amadei, P. Fisicaro, M. Pilli, G. Missale, A. Bertoletti, and C. Ferrari, J. Exp. Med. 201:675-680, 2005). We asked whether T-cell cross-reactivity between HCV and HIV could exist during HCV/HIV coinfection and affect pathogenesis. Our search for amino acid sequence homology between the HCV and HIV proteomes revealed two similar HLA-A2-restricted epitopes, HIV-Gag (SLYNTVATL [HIV-SL9]) and HCV-NS5b (ALYDVVSKL [HCV-AL9]). We found that 4 out of 20 HLA-A2-positive (HLA-A2+) HIV-infected individuals had CD8+ T cells that recognized both the HIV-SL9 and HCV-AL9 epitopes. However, the AL9 epitope was generally shown to be a weak agonist. Although HCV-monoinfected individuals in our study did not show AL9-specific responses, we found that about half of HCV/HIV-coinfected individuals had dual responses to both epitopes. High dual T-cell recognition among coinfected subjects was usually due to separate T-cell populations targeting each epitope, as determined by pentamer staining. The one individual demonstrating cross-reactive T cells to both epitopes showed the most advanced degree of liver disease. In coinfected individuals, we observed a positive correlation between the magnitudes of T-cell responses to both the SL9 and the AL9 epitopes, which was also positively associated with the clinical parameter of liver damage. Thus, we find that HIV infection induces T cells that can cross-react to heterologous viruses or prime for T cells that are closely related in sequence. However, the induction of cross-reactive T cells may not be associated with control of disease caused by the heterologous virus. This demonstrates that degeneracy of HIV-specific T cells may play a role in the immunopathology of HCV/HIV coinfection.
doi:10.1128/JVI.01743-10
PMCID: PMC3014184  PMID: 20980521
23.  Prevalence and risk factors for patient-reported joint pain among patients with HIV/Hepatitis C coinfection, Hepatitis C monoinfection, and HIV monoinfection 
Background
To determine the prevalence of patient-reported joint pain among patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/chronic hepatitis C virus (HCV) coinfection, chronic HCV monoinfection, and HIV monoinfection followed in hepatology and infectious disease outpatient practices.
Methods
Standardized interviews were performed among 79 HIV/HCV-coinfected, 93 HCV-monoinfected, and 30 HIV-monoinfected patients in a cross-sectional study within hepatology and infectious disease clinics at three centers. The Multi-Dimensional Health Assessment Questionnaire was used to ascertain joint pain and associated symptoms. Information on potential risk factors for joint pain was obtained during the interview and by chart review. Logistic regression was used to determine adjusted odds ratios (aORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of joint pain associated with risk factors of interest among chronic HCV-infected and HIV-infected patients.
Results
Joint pain was more commonly reported in HCV-monoinfected than HIV/HCV-coinfected (71% versus 56%; p = 0.038) and HIV-monoinfected (71% versus 50%; p = 0.035) patients. A previous diagnosis of arthritis and current smoking were risk factors for joint pain among HCV-infected patients (arthritis: aOR, 4.25; 95% CI, 1.84-9.81; smoking: aOR, 5.02; 95% CI, 2.15-11.74) and HIV-infected (arthritis: aOR, 5.36; 95% CI, 2.01-14.25; smoking: aOR, 6.07; 95% CI, 2.30-16.00) patients.
Conclusion
Patient-reported joint pain was prevalent among all three groups, but more common among chronic HCV-monoinfected than either HIV/HCV-coinfected or HIV-monoinfected patients. A prior diagnosis of arthritis and current smoking were risk factors for patient-reported joint pain among both HCV-infected and HIV-infected patients.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1186/s12891-015-0552-z) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1186/s12891-015-0552-z
PMCID: PMC4404567  PMID: 25896674
Hepatitis c; HIV; Arthralgia; Epidemiology
24.  Evaluating Liver Fibrosis by Transient Elastometry in Patients With HIV-HCV Coinfection and Monoinfection 
Hepatitis Monthly  2014;14(8):e15426.
Background:
Due to the high efficacy of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART), the number of patients living with HIV is increasing. Chronic HCV infection has become a leading cause of non-AIDS related morbidity and mortality in patients with HIV infection.
Objectives:
The aim of this cross-sectional study was to identify factors associated with liver fibrosis (LF) in patients with HIV monoinfection and HIV-HCV coinfection.
Patients and Methods:
We analyzed LF by transient elastometry ([TE], Fibroscan) in three groups of patients (HIV, HIV-HCV and HCV) followed at the Infectious Diseases Department of University of Ancona, Italy, between October 2009 and November 2012.
Results:
In total, 354 adults including 98 HIV, 70 HIV-HCV and 186 HCV patients were studied. HIV-HCV patients had a longer duration of HIV (P < 0.006) and HCV (P < 0.001) infections. Additionally, they were receiving cART therapy for a longer period (P < 0.001); they had higher prevalence of lipodystrophy (P < 0.001) and higher HCV load (P = 0.004). LF was significantly more pronounced in HCV and HIV-HCV compared to HIV patients (P < 0.001). A total of 13.3%, 39.2% and 51.4% of HIV, HCV and HIV-HCV, respectively, showed a LF ≥ F2. Additionally, a severe LF (F = 4) was significantly more frequent among HIV-HCV compared to other groups. A longer exposure to didanosine, stavudine, lopinavir/ritonavir and fosamprenavir resulted in increased LF by univariate analysis (P ranging from < 0.001 to 0.007). By logistic regression analysis, the only variables significantly associated with increased LF were HCV coinfection, older age, and high AST values (P ranging from < 0.001 to 0.036).
Conclusions:
HCV coinfection, older age and AST were associated with LF in patients with HIV infection.
doi:10.5812/hepatmon.15426
PMCID: PMC4199183  PMID: 25337140
Coinfection; Liver Fibrosis; Transient Elastometry
25.  HIV/HCV coinfection ameliorates the atherogenic lipoprotein abnormalities of HIV infection 
AIDS (London, England)  2014;28(1):49-58.
Background
Higher levels of small low-density lipoprotein (LDL) and lower levels of high-density lipoprotein (HDL) subclasses have been associated with increased risk of cardiovascular disease. The extent to which HIV infection and HIV/HCV coinfection are associated with abnormalities of lipoprotein subclasses is unknown.
Methods
Lipoprotein subclasses were measured by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy in plasma samples from 569 HIV-infected and 5948 control participants in the FRAM, CARDIA and MESA studies. Multivariable regression was used to estimate the association of HIV and HIV/HCV coinfection with lipoprotein measures with adjustment for demographics, lifestyle factors, and waist-to-hip ratio.
Results
Relative to controls, small LDL levels were higher in HIV-monoinfected persons (+381 nmol/L, p<.0001), with no increase seen in HIV/HCV coinfection (−16.6 nmol/L). Levels of large LDL levels were lower (−196 nmol/L, p<.0001) and small HDL were higher (+8.2 μmol/L, p<.0001) in HIV-monoinfection with intermediate values seen in HIV/HCV-coinfection. Large HDL levels were higher in HIV/HCV-coinfected persons relative to controls (+1.70 μmol/L, p<.0001), whereas little difference was seen in HIV-monoinfected persons (+0.33, p=0.075). Within HIV-infected participants, HCV was associated independently with lower levels of small LDL (−329 nmol/L, p<.0001) and small HDL (−4.6 μmol/L, p<.0001), even after adjusting for demographic and traditional cardiovascular risk factors.
Conclusion
HIV-monoinfected participants had worse levels of atherogenic LDL lipoprotein subclasses compared with controls. HIV/HCV coinfection attenuates these changes, perhaps by altering hepatic factors affecting lipoprotein production and/or metabolism. The effect of HIV/HCV coinfection on atherosclerosis and the clinical consequences of low small subclasses remain to be determined.
doi:10.1097/QAD.0000000000000026
PMCID: PMC4267724  PMID: 24136113
HIV infection; HCV infection; lipoproteins; cardiovascular disease

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