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1.  Evolution of HIV treatment guidelines in high and low-income countries: Converging recommendations 
Antiviral research  2013;103:88-93.
Over the past 15 years, antiretroviral treatment guidelines for HIV infection have evolved significantly, reflective of the major advances in this therapeutic area. Evidenced-based recommendations have largely replaced expert opinion, while diagnostic monitoring and therapeutic interventions have become more sophisticated and effective. Just ten years ago, there was a marked difference in access to antiretroviral therapy for patients in wealthy and impoverished countries. The increasing availability of therapy across the globe, however, has made it possible for international guidelines to more closely resemble those in industrialized countries. This article compares the evolution of antiretroviral therapy treatment guidelines from the United States Department of Health and Human Services and the World Health Organization, focusing on when to initiate ART in asymptomatic patients and in those with an opportunistic infection; initial regimens in general population and in special populations; when to change and what to change; and laboratory monitoring.
PMCID: PMC4193472  PMID: 24374148
2.  Switch from Enfuvirtide to Raltegravir in Virologically Suppressed HIV-1 Infected Patients: Effects on Level of Residual Viremia and Quality of Life 
Raltegravir is a potential treatment option for virologically suppressed HIV-1 infected patients on enfuvirtide with injection site reactions.
To characterize safety and efficacy of an enfuvirtride to raltegravir switch including changes in T cells, quality of life, and residual viremia.
Study Design
In patients with viral load<50 copies/mL and injection site reactions, enfuvirtide was switched to raltegravir without additional changes to the antiretroviral regimen. Virologic failure was defined as a viral load >1000 copies/mL or two consecutive viral load measurements between 50-1000 copies/mL (low-level viremia). Over the 24 week study, we compared changes in T cells, injection site reactions, quality of life, and residual viremia, as measured through the single-copy assay which can detect plasma virus down to a single copy, using paired t-tests.
Fourteen patients with a median CD4+ T-cell count of 420 cells/μL were enrolled. After the switch, two patients experienced virologic failure due to confirmed low-level viremia. However, both patients subsequently were resuppressed, one without any changes to his regimen. There was no change in CD4+ T-cell count. Injection site reactions resolved. However, there was little reported change in quality of life. The baseline median level of residual viremia was 6 copies/mL and did not change after the switch to raltegravir.
A switch to raltegravir in virologically suppressed patients on enfuvirtide is effective in maintaining immunologic and virologic control at 24 weeks but did not result in a change in residual viremia.
PMCID: PMC4467791  PMID: 19819183
HIV infections/*virology; enfuvirtide; raltegravir; patient satisfaction; skin/drug effects
3.  Association between Latent Proviral Characteristics and Immune Activation in Antiretrovirus-Treated Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1-Infected Adults 
Journal of Virology  2014;88(15):8629-8639.
Generalized immune activation during HIV infection is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, neurocognitive disease, osteoporosis, metabolic disorders, and physical frailty. The mechanisms driving this immune activation are poorly understood, particularly for individuals effectively treated with antiretroviral medications. We hypothesized that viral characteristics such as sequence diversity may play a role in driving HIV-associated immune activation. We therefore sequenced proviral DNA isolated from peripheral blood mononuclear cells from HIV-infected individuals on fully suppressive antiretroviral therapy. We performed phylogenetic analyses, calculated viral diversity and divergence in the env and pol genes, and determined coreceptor tropism and the frequency of drug resistance mutations. Comprehensive immune profiling included quantification of immune cell subsets, plasma cytokine levels, and intracellular signaling responses in T cells, B cells, and monocytes. These antiretroviral therapy-treated HIV-infected individuals exhibited a wide range of diversity and divergence in both env and pol genes. However, proviral diversity and divergence in env and pol, coreceptor tropism, and the level of drug resistance did not significantly correlate with markers of immune activation. A clinical history of virologic failure was also not significantly associated with levels of immune activation, indicating that a history of virologic failure does not inexorably lead to increased immune activation as long as suppressive antiretroviral medications are provided. Overall, this study demonstrates that latent viral diversity is unlikely to be a major driver of persistent HIV-associated immune activation.
IMPORTANCE Chronic immune activation, which is associated with cardiovascular disease, neurologic disease, and early aging, is likely to be a major driver of morbidity and mortality in HIV-infected individuals. Although treatment of HIV with antiretroviral medications decreases the level of immune activation, levels do not return to normal. The factors driving this persistent immune activation, particularly during effective treatment, are poorly understood. In this study, we investigated whether characteristics of the latent, integrated HIV provirus that persists during treatment are associated with immune activation. We found no relationship between latent viral characteristics and immune activation in treated individuals, indicating that qualities of the provirus are unlikely to be a major driver of persistent inflammation. We also found that individuals who had previously failed treatment but were currently effectively treated did not have significantly increased levels of immune activation, providing hope that past treatment failures do not have a lifelong “legacy” impact.
PMCID: PMC4135944  PMID: 24850730
4.  Low Baseline CD4+ Count Is Associated With Greater Bone Mineral Density Loss After Antiretroviral Therapy Initiation 
Low pretreatment CD4+ cell count is an independent risk factor for bone loss after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation, providing further evidence for the benefits of early ART. Initiation of ART at higher CD4+ counts may reduce the burden of osteoporosis and fragility fracture.
Background. Bone mineral density (BMD) decreases 2%–6% in the 2 years after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation. Pre-ART immune deficiency and early immune recovery may contribute to this loss.
Methods. We pooled data from 3 studies of ART initiation in treatment-naive patients in which serial whole-body dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry scans were performed. We used linear regression to evaluate effects of baseline CD4+ and 16-week CD4+ change (both absolute and relative) on 96-week total BMD change from baseline. We performed multivariable linear regression to assess associations between baseline variables of age, sex, race/ethnicity, body mass index (BMI), hepatitis C status, parent study, human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) RNA level, and assignment to a protease inhibitor (PI)– or tenofovir-containing regimen on 96-week total BMD change.
Results. The included 796 subjects had mean 96-week total BMD loss of 2.0%. In multivariable analysis, baseline CD4+ cell count was significantly associated with 96-week BMD loss; individuals with baseline CD4+ <50 cells/µL lost significantly more BMD compared to those with CD4+ ≥500 cells/µL. A greater relative, but not absolute, 16-week increase in CD4+ count was significantly associated with greater declines in BMD, but not after controlling for baseline CD4+ count. In multivariable analysis, older age, female sex, lower BMI, higher HIV-1 RNA levels, and PI and tenofovir assignment were also associated with greater BMD decline.
Conclusions. Low pretreatment CD4+ count, but not greater CD4+ count increase, is a strong and independent risk factor for bone loss after ART initiation. ART initiation at higher CD4+ counts may reduce the burden of osteoporosis and fragility fractures.
PMCID: PMC3805172  PMID: 23943825
anti-HIV agents; administration and dosage; HIV infections; drug therapy/virology; bone density
5.  Test Performance of Blood Beta-Glucan for Pneumocystis Jirovecii Pneumonia in Patients with AIDS and Respiratory Symptoms 
AIDS (London, England)  2013;27(6):967-972.
To define the test characteristics of plasma beta-glucan for diagnosis of Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia in AIDS patients with respiratory symptoms.
Analysis of baseline blood samples in a randomized strategy study of patients with acute opportunistic infections, limited to participants with respiratory symptoms.
Participants in the 282-person ACTG A5164 trial had baseline plasma samples assayed for beta-glucan testing. As part of A5164, two study investigators independently adjudicated the diagnosis of PCP. Respiratory symptoms were identified by investigators from a list of all signs and symptoms with an onset or resolution in the 21 days prior to or 14 days following study entry. Beta-glucan was defined as positive if ≥80 pg/mL and negative if <80 pg/mL.
Of 252 study participants with a beta-glucan result, 159 had at least one respiratory symptom, 139 of whom had a diagnosis of PCP. The sensitivity of beta-glucan for PCP in participants with respiratory symptoms was 92.8% (95% CI: 87.2%–96.5%), and specificity 75.0% (50.9%–91.3%). Among 134 individuals with positive beta-glucan and respiratory symptoms, 129 had PCP, for a positive predictive value of 96.3% (91.5%–98.8%). Fifteen of 25 patients with a normal beta-glucan did not have PCP, for a negative predictive value of 60% (38.7%–78.9%).
Elevated plasma beta-glucan has a high predictive value for diagnosis of PCP in AIDS patients with respiratory symptoms. We propose an algorithm for the use of beta-glucan as a diagnostic tool based on the pretest probability of PCP in such patients.
PMCID: PMC4181577  PMID: 23698062
Beta-glucan; HIV; Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome; Pneumocystis; Pneumonia; Predictive Value of Tests
6.  Clinical and Immunologic Predictors of Death After an Acute Opportunistic Infection: Results from ACTG A5164 
HIV clinical trials  2014;15(4):133-139.
In the pre-ART era, markers of increased disease severity during an acute opportunistic infection (OI) were associated with mortality. Even with ART, mortality remains high during the first year after an OI in persons with advanced HIV infection, but it is unclear whether previous predictors of mortality remain valid in the current era.
Determine clinical and immunological predictors of death after an OI.
We used clinical data and stored plasma from ACTG A5164, a multi-center study evaluating the optimal timing of ART during a non-tuberculous OI. We developed Cox models evaluating associations between clinical parameters and plasma marker levels at entry and time to death over the first 48 weeks after the diagnosis of OI. We developed multivariable models incorporating only clinical parameters, only plasma marker levels, or both.
The median CD4+ T-cell count in study participants at baseline was 29 cells/uL. 64% had Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (PCP). Twenty-three of 282 (8.2%) subjects died. In univariate analyses, entry mycobacterial infection, OI number, hospitalization, low albumin, low hemoglobin, lower CD4, and higher IL-8 and sTNFrII levels and lower IL-17 levels were associated with mortality. In the combined model using both clinical and immunologic parameters, the presence of an entry mycobacterial infection and higher sTNFrII levels were significantly associated with death.
In the ART era, clinical risk factors for death previously identified in the pre-ART era remain predictive. Additionally, activation of the innate immune system is associated with an increased risk of death following an acute OI.
PMCID: PMC4167015  PMID: 25143022
HIV Infections/complications; mortality; opportunistic infections
7.  Gender inequality and HIV transmission: a global analysis 
The HIV pandemic disproportionately impacts young women. Worldwide, young women aged 15–24 are infected with HIV at rates twice that of young men, and young women alone account for nearly a quarter of all new HIV infections. The incommensurate HIV incidence in young – often poor – women underscores how social and economic inequalities shape the HIV epidemic. Confluent social forces, including political and gender violence, poverty, racism, and sexism impede equal access to therapies and effective care, but most of all constrain the agency of women.
HIV prevalence data was compiled from the 2010 UNAIDS Global Report. Gender inequality was assessed using the 2011 United Nations Human Development Report Gender Inequality Index (GII). Logistic regression models were created with predominant mode of transmission (heterosexual vs. MSM/IDU) as the dependent variable and GII, Muslim vs. non-Muslim, Democracy Index, male circumcision rate, log gross national income (GNI) per capita at purchasing power parity (PPP), and region as independent variables.
Results and discussion
There is a significant correlation between having a predominantly heterosexual epidemic and high gender inequality across all models. There is not a significant association between whether a country is predominantly Muslim, has a high/low GNI at PPP, has a high/low circumcision rate, and its primary mode of transmission. In addition, there are only three countries that have had a generalized epidemic in the past but no longer have one: Cambodia, Honduras, and Eritrea. GII data are available only for Cambodia and Honduras, and these countries showed a 37 and 34% improvement, respectively, in their Gender Inequality Indices between 1995 and 2011. During the same period, both countries reduced their HIV prevalence below the 1% threshold of a generalized epidemic. This represents limited but compelling evidence that improvements in gender inequality can lead to the abatement of generalized epidemics.
Gender inequality is an important factor in the maintenance – and possibly in the establishment of – generalized HIV epidemics. We should view improvements in gender inequality as part of a broader public health strategy.
PMCID: PMC4074603  PMID: 24976436
gender inequality; HIV; AIDS; structural interventions; political ecology
8.  Early virologic response to abacavir/lamivudine and tenofovir/emtricitabine during ACTG A5202 
HIV clinical trials  2013;14(6):284-291.
ACTG A5202 randomized treatment-naive individuals to tenofovir-emtricitabine (TDF/FTC) or abacavir-lamivudine (ABC/3TC) combined with efavirenz (EFV) or atazanavir/ritonavir (ATV/r). Individuals in the high screening viral load (VL) stratum (≥100,000 copies/mL) had increased rates of virologic failure with ABC/3TC.
Compare regimen-specific early virologic response.
Using Wilcoxon rank-sum tests, we compared regimen-specific VL changes from entry to week 4 in A5202 subjects (n=1813) and from entry to week 1, 2 and 4 in a 179-patient substudy. We evaluated associations between week 4 VL change and time to virologic failure with Cox proportional-hazards models.
TDF/FTC- and ABC/3TC produced similar Week 4 viral load declines in the entire study population and in the high VL stratum. EFV produced greater VL declines from baseline at week 4 than ATV/r (median −2.1 vs. −1.9 log10 copies/mL; p<0.001). In the substudy of subjects with week 1, 2 and 4 VL data, there was no difference in viral load decline in those randomized to TDF/FTC versus ABC/3TC, but EFV resulted in greater VL decline from entry at each of these timepoints than ATV/r. Smaller Week 4 viral load decline was associated with increased risk of virologic failure.
Within all treatment arms, a less robust week 4 virologic response was associated with higher risk for subsequent virologic failure. However, between-regimen differences in week 4 VL declines did not parallel the previously reported differences in longer term virologic efficacy in A5202, suggesting that between-regimen differences in responses were not due to intrinsic differences in antiviral activity.
PMCID: PMC4060613  PMID: 24334181
Anti-HIV Agents; HIV Infections/drug therapy/*virology; Treatment Outcome
9.  HIV-1 Genotypic Resistance Patterns Predict Response to Saquinavir–Ritonavir Therapy in Patients in Whom Previous Protease Inhibitor Therapy Had Failed 
Annals of internal medicine  1999;131(11):813-821.
Tests for resistance to HIV drugs are available for clinical use; however, their predictive value has not been fully assessed.
To determine HIV-1 genotypic predictors of a virologic response to saquinavir–ritonavir therapy in patients in whom at least one previous protease inhibitor–containing regimen had failed and to compare the predictive value of baseline genotype with that of standard clinical evaluation.
Retrospective clinical cohort study.
University-based HIV clinic.
54 HIV-1–infected adults treated with saquinavir–ritonavir who had experienced virologic failure while receiving a protease inhibitor–containing regimen for at least 3 months.
HIV-1 reverse transcriptase and protease gene sequences, CD4 cell counts, clinical characteristics, detailed antiretroviral treatment history, and plasma HIV-1 RNA levels at baseline and at three follow-up time points (median, 4, 12, and 26 weeks). Virologic failure was defined as a plasma HIV RNA level greater than 1000 copies/mL.
In 22 patients (41%), a plasma HIV-1 RNA level less than 500 copies/mL was achieved by week 12; in 15 patients (28%), this response was maintained through week 26. Clinical characteristics predicting a poorer response included a diagnosis of AIDS, lower CD4 cell count, and higher plasma HIV RNA level (P < 0.03). Number of previous nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors, previous protease inhibitor therapy, and duration of previous protease inhibitor therapy were predictors of poorer response (P < 0.01). Multivariate regression models revealed that protease mutations present at the initiation of saquinavir-ritonavir therapy were the strongest predictors of virologic response. A model of clinical features explained up to 45% of the variation in virologic outcomes by week 12, whereas the explained variance was 71% when genotypic predictors were included.
In patients in whom protease inhibitor–containing antiretroviral therapy fails, HIV-1 genotype is predictive of virologic response to subsequent therapy. This predictive capacity adds to that of standard clinical evaluation.
PMCID: PMC2606144  PMID: 10610625
10.  Elevated Interleukin 8 and T-Helper 1 and T-Helper 17 Cytokine Levels Prior to Antiretroviral Therapy in Participants Who Developed Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome During ACTG A5164 
The Journal of Infectious Diseases  2012;206(11):1715-1723.
Background. Immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (IRIS) reflects an aberrant immune response that can develop in human immunodeficiency virus–infected patients initiating antiretroviral therapy (ART). Its pathogenesis remains unclear.
Methods. We performed a nested case-control study using specimens from ACTG A5164. We compared plasma biomarkers and T-cell subsets in 19 IRIS and 39 control participants at study entry, ART initiation, and IRIS and used conditional logistic regression to develop IRIS predictive models. We evaluated the effect of corticosteroids on biomarker levels.
Results. Eleven and 8 participants developed paradoxical and unmasking IRIS, respectively, none while still receiving corticosteroids. Compared to controls, cases displayed elevations at study entry in interleukin (IL) 8, T-helper (Th) 1 (IL-2, interferon [IFN]-γ, tumor necrosis factor [TNF]) and Th17 (IL-17) cytokine levels that persisted through ART initiation and IRIS. In logistic regression, baseline higher IFN-γ and TNF were strong predictors of IRIS. Participants who received corticosteroids and later developed IRIS had marked increases in IL-6, IL-8, and IFN-γ at the time of IRIS. T-cell activation markers did not differ in cases and controls prior to ART but were increased in cases at the time of IRIS.
Conclusions. Increased IL-8, Th1, and Th17 cytokine levels in IRIS patients precede ART initiation and could help identify patient populations at higher risk for IRIS.
PMCID: PMC3488199  PMID: 23002445
11.  Blood (1→3)-β-D-Glucan as a Diagnostic Test for HIV-Related Pneumocystis jirovecii Pneumonia 
In a large group of HIV-infected clinical trial participants with diverse opportunistic infections, blood beta-glucan was a more sensitive noninvasive test for PCP than serum LDH; sensitivity was also higher than that frequently reported for induced sputum examinations.
(See the editorial commentary by Morris and Masur, on pages 203–204.)
Background. Improved noninvasive diagnostic tests for Pneumocystis jirovecii pneumonia (PCP) are needed. We evaluated the test characteristics of plasma (1→3)-β-D-glucan (β-glucan) for HIV-related PCP among a large group of patients presenting with diverse opportunistic infections (OIs).
Methods. The study population included all 282 participants in AIDS Clinical Trials Group A5164, a study of early versus deferred antiretroviral therapy in conjunction with initial therapy of acute OIs. Baseline plasma samples were assayed for β-glucan, with standard assay reference values defining ≥80 pg/mL as positive. Before this analysis, diagnosis of PCP was independently adjudicated by 2 study investigators after reviewing reports from study sites.
Results. A total of 252 persons had a β-glucan result that could be analyzed, 173 (69%) of whom had received a diagnosis of PCP. Median β-glucan with PCP was 408 pg/mL (interquartile range [IQR], 209–500 pg/mL), compared with 37 pg/mL (IQR, 31–235 pg/mL) without PCP (P < .001). The sensitivity of β-glucan dichotomized at 80 pg/mL for the diagnosis of PCP was 92% (95% confidence interval [CI], 87%–96%), and the specificity was 65% (95% CI, 53%–75%); positive and negative predictive values were 85% (95% CI, 79%–90%) and 80% (95% CI, 68%–89%) respectively, based on the study prevalence of 69% of patients with PCP. Rates of abnormal lactate dehyrogenase levels did not differ significantly between those with and without PCP.
Conclusions. Blood (1→3)-β-D-glucan is strongly correlated with HIV-related PCP. In some clinical centers, this may be a more sensitive test than the induced sputum examination and could reduce the need for both bronchoscopy and empirical therapy of PCP.
PMCID: PMC3165964  PMID: 21690628
12.  Association of Low Level Viremia with Inflammation and Mortality in HIV-Infected Adults 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(11):e26320.
Whether HIV viremia, particularly at low levels is associated with inflammation, increased coagulation, and all-cause mortality is unclear.
The associations of HIV RNA level with C-reactive protein (CRP), fibrinogen, interleukin (IL)-6 and mortality were evaluated in 1116 HIV-infected participants from the Study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV infection. HIV RNA level was categorized as undetectable (i.e., “target not detected”), 1–19, 20–399, 400–9999, and ≥10,000 copies/ml. Covariates included demographics, lifestyle, adipose tissue, and HIV-related factors.
HIV RNA level had little association with CRP. Categories of HIV RNA below 10,000 copies/ml had similar levels of IL-6 compared with an undetectable HIV RNA level, while HIV RNA ≥10,000 copies/ml was associated with 89% higher IL-6 (p<0.001). This association was attenuated by ∼50% after adjustment for CD4+ cell count. Higher HIV RNA was associated with higher fibrinogen. Compared to an undetectable HIV RNA level, fibrinogen was 0.6%, 1.9%, 4.5%, 4.6%, and 9.4% higher across HIV RNA categories, respectively, and statistically significant at the highest level (p = 0.0002 for HIV RNA ≥10,000 copies/ml). Higher HIV RNA was associated with mortality during follow-up in unadjusted analysis, but showed little association after adjustment for CD4+ cell count and inflammation.
HIV RNA ≥10,000 copies/ml was associated with higher IL-6 and fibrinogen, but lower levels of viremia appeared similar, and there was little association with CRP. The relationship of HIV RNA with IL-6 was strongly affected by CD4 cell depletion. After adjustment for CD4+ cell count and inflammation, viremia did not appear to be substantially associated with mortality risk over 5 years.
PMCID: PMC3206804  PMID: 22073156
13.  Inflammation and Mortality in HIV-infected Adults: Analysis of the FRAM Study Cohort 
To determine the association of inflammatory markers, fibrinogen and C-reactive protein (CRP), with 5-year mortality risk.
Vital status was ascertained in 922 HIV-infected participants from the Study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV infection. Multivariable logistic regression estimated odds ratios (OR) after adjustment for demographic, cardiovascular and HIV-related factors.
Over a 5-year period, HIV-infected participants with fibrinogen levels in the highest tertile(>406mg/dL) had 2.6-fold higher adjusted odds of death than those with fibrinogen in the lowest tertile(<319mg/dL). Those with high CRP(>3mg/L) had 2.7-fold higher adjusted odds of death than those with CRP<1mg/L. When stratified by CD4 count category, fibrinogen (as a linear variable) remained independently associated [OR(95% confidence intervals) per 100mg/dL increase in fibrinogen: 1.93(1.57,2.37);1.43(1.14,1.79);1.43(1.14,1.81);and 1.30(1.04,1.63) for CD4 <200,200–350,>350–500, and >500cells/μL, respectively. Higher CRP also remained associated with higher odds of death overall and within each CD4 subgroup.
Fibrinogen and CRP are strong and independent predictors of mortality in HIV-infected adults. Our findings suggest that even in those with relatively preserved CD4 counts >500cells/μL, inflammation remains an important risk factor for mortality. Further investigation should determine whether interventions to reduce inflammation might decrease mortality risk in HIV-infected individuals.
PMCID: PMC2955817  PMID: 20581689
HIV; inflammation; C-reactive protein; fibrinogen; mortality
14.  Early Antiretroviral Therapy for Patients With Acute AIDS-Related Opportunistic Infections: A Cost-Effectiveness Analysis of ACTG A5164 
HIV clinical trials  2010;11(5):248-259.
ACTG A5164 demonstrated that early antiretroviral therapy (ART) in HIV-infected patients with acute opportunistic infections (OIs) reduced death and AIDS progression compared to ART initiation 1 month later. We project the life expectancies, costs, and incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs) of these strategies.
Using an HIV simulation model, we compared 2 strategies for patients with acute OIs: (1) an intervention to deliver early ART, and (2) deferred ART. Parameters from ACTG A5164 included initial mean CD4 count (47/µL), linkage to outpatient care (87%), and immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome 1 month after ART initiation (7%). The estimated intervention cost was $1,650/patient.
Early ART lowered projected 1-year mortality from 10.4% to 8.2% and increased life expectancy from 10.07 to 10.39 quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs). Lifetime costs increased from $385,220 with deferred ART to $397,500 with early ART, primarily because life expectancy increased, producing an ICER of $38,600/QALY. Results were most sensitive to increased intervention cost and decreased virologic efficacy in the early ART strategy.
An intervention to initiate ART early in patients with acute OIs improves survival and meets US cost-effectiveness thresholds. Programs should be developed to implement this strategy at sites where HIV-infected patients present with OIs.
PMCID: PMC3183461  PMID: 21126955
antiretroviral therapy; HIV; cost; cost-effectiveness; opportunistic infection
15.  The Study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV Infection (FRAM): Methods, Design, and Sample Characteristics 
American journal of epidemiology  2006;163(9):860-869.
The Study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV Infection (FRAM), initiated in 2000, investigates the prevalence and correlates of changes in fat distribution, insulin resistance, and dyslipidemia among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected men and women compared with a population-based group of control men and women. Between June 2000 and September 2002, 1,480 participants (1,183 HIV-infected persons and 297 controls) were enrolled in FRAM. Measurements taken included whole-body magnetic resonance imaging for quantification of regional fat, anthropometric measurements, central laboratory analysis of metabolites, and assessment of symptoms, sociodemographic factors, and lifestyle. Similar measurements were repeated among FRAM participants 4 years later (FRAM 2) for investigation of the progression of fat distribution changes, insulin resistance, and hyperlipidemia. In FRAM 2, which is ongoing, investigators are also determining the associations of subclinical cardiovascular disease, as measured by carotid intimal-medial wall thickness, with HIV infection, fat distribution changes, insulin resistance, and other proatherogenic changes in serum lipid levels. The demographic characteristics of HIV-infected FRAM men and women were comparable to those reported from a national random sampling of HIV-infected men and women receiving medical care in the United States. The representativeness of the FRAM sample increases its value as a resource for studies on fat distribution, metabolic changes, and atherosclerosis in HIV infection.
PMCID: PMC3170407  PMID: 16524955
body fat distribution; dyslipidemias; HIV infections; insulin resistance; lipodystrophy; metabolism
16.  International Cohort Analysis of the Antiviral Activities of Zidovudine and Tenofovir in the Presence of the K65R Mutation in Reverse Transcriptase▿  
A K65R mutation in HIV-1 reverse transcriptase can occur with the failure of tenofovir-, didanosine-, abacavir-, and, in some cases, stavudine-containing regimens and leads to reduced phenotypic susceptibility to these drugs and hypersusceptibility to zidovudine, but its clinical impact is poorly described. We identified isolates with the K65R mutation within the Stanford Resistance Database and a French cohort for which subsequent treatment and virological response data were available. The partial genotypic susceptibility score (pGSS) was defined as the genotypic susceptibility score (GSS) excluding the salvage regimen's nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI) component. A three-part virologic response variable was defined (e.g., complete virologic response, partial virologic response, and no virologic response). Univariate, multivariate, and bootstrap analyses evaluated factors associated with the virologic response, focusing on the contributions of zidovudine and tenofovir. Seventy-one of 130 patients (55%) achieved a complete virologic response (defined as an HIV RNA level of <200 copies/ml). In univariate analyses, pGSS and zidovudine use in the salvage regimen were predictors of the virologic response. In a multivariate analysis, pGSS and zidovudine and tenofovir use were associated with the virologic response. Bootstrap analyses showed similar reductions in HIV RNA levels with zidovudine or tenofovir use (0.5 to 0.9 log10). In the presence of K65R, zidovudine and tenofovir are associated with similar reductions in HIV RNA levels. Given its tolerability, tenofovir may be the preferred agent over zidovudine even in the presence of the K65R mutation.
PMCID: PMC2849386  PMID: 20124005
17.  Nonpolymorphic Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Protease and Reverse Transcriptase Treatment-Selected Mutations▿  
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  2009;53(11):4869-4878.
The spectrum of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) protease and reverse transcriptase (RT) mutations selected by antiretroviral (ARV) drugs requires ongoing reassessment as ARV treatment patterns evolve and increasing numbers of protease and RT sequences of different viral subtypes are published. Accordingly, we compared the prevalences of protease and RT mutations in HIV-1 group M sequences from individuals with and without a history of previous treatment with protease inhibitors (PIs) or RT inhibitors (RTIs). Mutations in protease sequences from 26,888 individuals and in RT sequences from 25,695 individuals were classified according to whether they were nonpolymorphic in untreated individuals and whether their prevalence increased fivefold with ARV therapy. This analysis showed that 88 PI-selected and 122 RTI-selected nonpolymorphic mutations had a prevalence that was fivefold higher in individuals receiving ARVs than in ARV-naïve individuals. This was an increase of 47% and 77%, respectively, compared with the 60 PI- and 69 RTI-selected mutations identified in a similar analysis that we published in 2005 using subtype B sequences obtained from one-fourth as many individuals. In conclusion, many nonpolymorphic mutations in protease and RT are under ARV selection pressure. The spectrum of treatment-selected mutations is changing as data for more individuals are collected, treatment exposures change, and the number of available sequences from non-subtype B viruses increases.
PMCID: PMC2772298  PMID: 19721070
18.  Hepatotoxicity and Gastrointestinal Intolerance when Healthy Volunteers taking Rifampin add Twice-Daily Atazanavir and Ritonavir 
Rifampin is the cornerstone of antituberculosis therapy, but induction of hepatic cytochrome P450 (CYP) 3A by rifampin markedly lowers HIV protease inhibitor plasma concentrations.
This phase I, open-label, one-arm study was designed to assess pharmacokinetic interactions and safety of atazanavir, ritonavir, and rifampin among 14 evaluable HIV-seronegative volunteers. The study included three sequential periods of study drug dosing, with plasma sampling for pharmacokinetic analyses to occur on the last day of each period. During period 1, participants received rifampin 600 mg every 24 hours for 8 days. During period 2, participants continued rifampin 600 mg every 24 hours, and added atazanavir 300 mg and ritonavir 100 mg every 12 hours, to continue for at least 11 days. During period 3, atazanavir was to be increased to 400 mg every 12 hours.
Upon adding atazanavir and ritonavir, the first three subjects developed vomiting and transaminase elevations resulting in study drug discontinuation. The study was therefore terminated.
Co-administration of rifampin with HIV protease inhibitors may not be a viable treatment option if rifampin administration precedes protease inhibitor initiation. Future studies which explore concomitant HIV protease inhibitors with rifampin must carefully consider the sequence in which drugs are initiated.
PMCID: PMC2653210  PMID: 19194314
atazanavir; ritonavir; rifampin; tuberculosis; hepatotoxicity
19.  Safety and Efficacy of Enfuvirtide in Combination with Darunavir-Ritonavir and an Optimized Background Regimen in Treatment-Experienced Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Patients: the Below the Level of Quantification Study▿  
Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy  2008;52(12):4315-4319.
Enfuvirtide is the first fusion and entry inhibitor approved for use for the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1 infection and as such represents a novel class of agents. For the population of patients experienced with three antiretroviral classes, enfuvirtide provides an additional option for treatment. This prospective, open-label, 24-week, single-arm trial assessed the efficacy and safety of enfuvirtide (90 mg injected subcutaneously twice daily) in combination with darunavir-ritonavir (600/100 mg administered orally twice daily) in triple-antiretroviral-class-experienced adults failing their current regimen. The primary efficacy endpoint was the proportion of participants with plasma HIV RNA loads of <50 copies/ml. Other virological and immunological measures were also evaluated, as were the effects of the baseline viral coreceptor tropism and darunavir phenotype sensitivity scores on the outcomes. At week 24, 60.3%, 72.5%, and 84.0% of 131 participants achieved viral loads of <50 copies/ml and <400 copies/ml and a change from the baseline load of ≥1 log10 copies/ml, respectively. A baseline viral load of ≤5 log10 copies/ml was a significant predictor of achieving a viral load of <50 copies/ml at 24 weeks; however, neither background genotype sensitivity nor darunavir phenotype sensitivity was a significant predictor of the achievement of viral loads of <50 copies/ml. Although these findings are limited by the relatively small numbers of participants with darunavir susceptibility changes of ≥10-fold, they suggest that combining enfuvirtide and darunavir-ritonavir with an optimized background regimen in triple-class experienced participants naïve to these agents can result in positive virological and immunological responses regardless of most baseline parameters.
PMCID: PMC2592875  PMID: 18809940
20.  Early Antiretroviral Therapy Reduces AIDS Progression/Death in Individuals with Acute Opportunistic Infections: A Multicenter Randomized Strategy Trial 
PLoS ONE  2009;4(5):e5575.
Optimal timing of ART initiation for individuals presenting with AIDS-related OIs has not been defined.
Methods and Findings
A5164 was a randomized strategy trial of “early ART” - given within 14 days of starting acute OI treatment versus “deferred ART” - given after acute OI treatment is completed. Randomization was stratified by presenting OI and entry CD4 count. The primary week 48 endpoint was 3-level ordered categorical variable: 1. Death/AIDS progression; 2. No progression with incomplete viral suppression (ie HIV viral load (VL) ≥50 copies/ml); 3. No progression with optimal viral suppression (ie HIV VL <50 copies/ml). Secondary endpoints included: AIDS progression/death; plasma HIV RNA and CD4 responses and safety parameters including IRIS.
282 subjects were evaluable; 141 per arm. Entry OIs included Pneumocytis jirovecii pneumonia 63%, cryptococcal meningitis 12%, and bacterial infections 12%. The early and deferred arms started ART a median of 12 and 45 days after start of OI treatment, respectively.
The difference in the primary endpoint did not reach statistical significance: AIDS progression/death was seen in 20 (14%) vs. 34 (24%); whereas no progression but with incomplete viral suppression was seen in 54 (38%) vs. 44 (31%); and no progression with optimal viral suppression in 67 (48%) vs 63 (45%) in the early vs. deferred arm, respectively (p = 0.22). However, the early ART arm had fewer AIDS progression/deaths (OR = 0.51; 95% CI = 0.27–0.94) and a longer time to AIDS progression/death (stratified HR = 0.53; 95% CI = 0.30–0.92). The early ART had shorter time to achieving a CD4 count above 50 cells/mL (p<0.001) and no increase in adverse events.
Early ART resulted in less AIDS progression/death with no increase in adverse events or loss of virologic response compared to deferred ART. These results support the early initiation of ART in patients presenting with acute AIDS-related OIs, absent major contraindications.
Trial Registration NCT00055120
PMCID: PMC2680972  PMID: 19440326
21.  HIV-1 Protease and Reverse-Transcriptase Mutations 
The Journal of infectious diseases  2005;192(3):456-465.
It is important, for drug-resistance surveillance, to identify human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) strains that have undergone antiretroviral drug selection.
We compared the prevalence of protease and reverse-transcriptase (RT) mutations in HIV-1 sequences from persons with and without previous treatment with protease inhibitors (PIs), nucleoside RT inhibitors (NRTIs), and nonnucleoside RT inhibitors (NNRTIs). Treatment-associated mutations in protease isolates from 5867 persons and RT isolates from 6247 persons were categorized by whether they were polymorphic (prevalence, >0.5%) in untreated individuals and whether they were established drug-resistance mutations. New methods were introduced to minimize misclassification from transmitted resistance, population stratification, sequencing artifacts, and multiple hypothesis testing.
Some 36 established and 24 additional nonpolymorphic protease mutations at 34 positions were related to PI treatment, 21 established and 22 additional nonpolymorphic RT mutations at 24 positions with NRTI treatment, and 15 established and 11 additional nonpolymorphic RT mutations at 15 positions with NNRTI treatment. In addition, 11 PI-associated and 1 NRTI-associated established mutations were polymorphic in viruses from untreated persons.
Established drug-resistance mutations encompass only a subset of treatment-associated mutations; some of these are polymorphic in untreated persons. In contrast, nonpolymorphic treatment-associated mutations may be more sensitive and specific markers of transmitted HIV-1 drug resistance.
PMCID: PMC2597526  PMID: 15995959
22.  Extended spectrum of HIV-1 reverse transcriptase mutations in patients receiving multiple nucleoside analog inhibitors 
AIDS (London, England)  2003;17(6):791-799.
To characterize reverse transcriptase (RT) mutations by their association with extent of nucleoside RT inhibitor (NRTI) therapy. To identify mutational clusters in RT sequences from persons receiving multiple NRTI.
A total of 1210 RT sequences from persons with known antiretroviral therapy were analyzed: 641 new sequences were performed at Stanford University Hospital; 569 were previously published.
Chi-square tests and logistic regression were done to identify associations between mutations and NRTI therapy. Correlation studies were done to identify mutational clusters. The Benjamini-Hochberg procedure was used to correct for multiple comparisons.
Mutations at 26 positions were significantly associated with NRTI including 17 known resistance mutations (positions 41, 44, 62, 65, 67, 69, 70, 74, 75, 77, 116, 118, 151, 184, 210, 215, 219) and nine previously unreported mutations (positions 20, 39, 43, 203, 208, 218, 221, 223, 228). The nine new mutations correlated linearly with number of NRTI; 777 out of 817 (95%) instances occurred with known drug resistance mutations. Positions 203, 208, 218, 221, 223, and 228 were conserved in untreated persons; positions 20, 39, and 43 were polymorphic. Most NRTI-associated mutations clustered into three groups: (i) 62, 65, 75, 77, 115, 116, 151; (ii) 41, 43, 44, 118, 208, 210, 215, 223; (iii) 67, 69, 70, 218, 219, 228.
Mutations at nine previously unreported positions are associated with NRTI therapy. These mutations are probably accessory because they occur almost exclusively with known drug resistance mutations. Most NRTI mutations group into one of three clusters, although several (e.g., M184V) occur in multiple mutational contexts.
PMCID: PMC2573403  PMID: 12660525
HIV drug resistance; resistance mutations; reverse transcriptase inhibitors; HIV diagnostic tests; antiretroviral therapy
23.  N88D Facilitates the Co-occurrence of D30N and L90M and the Development of Multidrug Resistance in HIV Type 1 Protease following Nelfinavir Treatment Failure 
AIDS research and human retroviruses  2006;22(12):1300-1305.
Nelfinavir was once one of the most commonly used protease inhibitors (PIs). To investigate the genetic mechanisms of multidrug resistance in protease isolates with the primary nelfinavir resistance mutation D30N, we analyzed patterns of protease mutations in 582 viruses with D30N from 460 persons undergoing HIV-1 genotypic resistance testing at Stanford University Hospital from 1997 to 2005. Three patterns of mutational associations were identified. First, D30N was positively associated with N88D but negatively associated with N88S. Second, D30N and L90M were negatively associated except in the presence of N88D, which facilitated the cooccurrence of D30N and L90M. Third, D30N + N88D + L90M formed a stable genetic backbone for the accumulation of additional protease inhibitor (PI) resistance mutations. In 16 patients having isolates with more than one combination of mutations at positions 30, 88, and 90, all exhibited one of the steps in the following progression: D30N → D30N + N88D → D30N + N88D + L90M → D30N + N88D + L90M + (L33F ± I84V or M46I/L ± I54V). Although nelfinavir is now used less frequently than other PIs, the well-delineated mutational pathway we describe is likely to influence patterns of cross-resistance in viruses from persons who experience virologic failure while receiving this PI.
PMCID: PMC2573402  PMID: 17209774
24.  Lack of Detectable Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Superinfection during 1072 Person-Years of Observation 
The Journal of infectious diseases  2003;188(3):397-405.
We examined consecutive protease (PR) and reverse transcriptase (RT) sequences from human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1—infected individuals, to distinguish changes resulting from sequence evolution due to possible superinfection. Between July 1997 and December 2001, ⩾2 PR and RT samples from 718 persons were sequenced at Stanford University Hospital. Thirty-seven persons had highly divergent sequence pairs characterized by a nucleotide distance of >4.5% in PR or >3.0% in RT. In 16 of 37 sequence pairs, divergence resulted from the loss of mutations during a treatment interruption or from the gain of mutations with reinstitution of treatment. tat and/or gag sequencing of HIV-1 from cryopreserved plasma samples could be performed on 15 of the 21 divergent isolate pairs from persons without a treatment interruption. The sequences of these genes, unaffected by selective drug pressure, were monophyletic. Although HIV-1 PR and RT genes from treated persons may become highly divergent, these changes usually are the result of sequence evolution, rather than superinfection.
PMCID: PMC2547470  PMID: 12870121
25.  Effect of Concomitantly Administered Rifampin on the Pharmacokinetics and Safety of Atazanavir Administered Twice Daily▿ † 
The potent induction of hepatic cytochrome P450 3A isoforms by rifampin complicates therapy for coinfection with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and Mycobacterium tuberculosis. We performed an open-label, single-arm study to assess the safety and pharmacokinetic interactions of the HIV protease inhibitor atazanavir coadministered with rifampin. Ten healthy HIV-negative subjects completed pharmacokinetic sampling at steady state while receiving 300 mg atazanavir every 12 h without rifampin (period 1), 300 mg atazanavir every 12 h with 600 mg rifampin every 24 h (period 2), and 400 mg atazanavir every 12 h with 600 mg rifampin every 24 h (period 3). During period 1, the mean concentration of drug in serum at 12 h (C12 h) was 811 ng/ml (range, 363 to 2,484 ng/ml) for atazanavir, similar to historic seronegative data for once-daily treatment with 300 mg atazanavir boosted with 100 mg ritonavir. During periods 2 and 3, the mean C12 h values for atazanavir were 44 ng/ml (range, <25 to187 ng/ml) and 113 ng/ml (range, 39 to 260 ng/ml), respectively, well below historic seronegative data for once-daily treatment with 400 mg atazanavir without ritonavir. Although safe and generally well tolerated, 300 mg or 400 mg atazanavir administered every 12 h did not maintain adequate plasma exposure when coadministered with rifampin.
PMCID: PMC2043180  PMID: 17576825

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