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1.  Drug Abuse and Hepatitis C Infection as Comorbid Features of HIV Associated Neurocognitive Disorder: Neurocognitive and Neuroimaging Features 
Neuropsychology review  2009;19(2):215-231.
Substance abuse and co-infection with hepatitis C (HCV) are two highly relevant determinants of neurocognitive and neuroimaging abnormalities associated with HIV. Substance abuse and HCV are common in the HIV population and there is increasing evidence that the CNS is directly compromised by these comorbid conditions via additive or synergistic processes. In this article we review the current literature regarding mechanisms of neuronal injury as well as the neuropsychological and neuroimaging signatures associated with substance abuse and HCV status among HIV patients. We discuss specific methodological challenges and threats to validity associated with studies of HIV and comorbid substance use disorders or HCV and review potential strategies for minimizing their confounding effects. Efforts to understand the interactions between HIV, substance abuse and HCV co-infection will lead to more complete models of neuropathogenesis of HIV and a greater understanding of the variability in neuropsychological expression of HIV Associated Neurocognitive Disorder.
PMCID: PMC3635478  PMID: 19468837
HIV; Drug abuse; Hepatitis C; Addiction; Neurocognition; Neuroimaging; Dementia
2.  Influence of Procedural Learning on Iowa Gambling Task Performance Among HIV+ Individuals with History of Substance Dependence 
HIV+ individuals have been shown to demonstrate deficits on the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), a complex measure of “decision-making.” Little remains known about what other neurocognitive processes may account for variability in IGT performance among HIV+ samples or the role of procedural learning (PL) in IGT performance. A sample of 49 HIV+ individuals with a history of substance use disorders was examined to explore the relationship between IGT performance and three measures of PL: The Rotary Pursuit, Mirror Star Tracing, and Weather Prediction tasks. We found no statistically significant relationships between IGT performance and any of the PL tasks, despite finding significant correlations among the PL tasks. This pattern of results persisted when analyzing IGT performance in various ways (e.g., performance on earlier trial blocks or impairment classifications). Although other nondeclarative processes (e.g., somatic markers) may be important for IGT performance, these findings do not support PL as an important component neurocognitive process for the IGT. Similarly, these results suggest that differences in PL performance does not account for the decision-making deficits or variability in performances observed on the IGT among HIV+ individuals with a history of substance dependence.
PMCID: PMC2809553  PMID: 19939850
HIV; Substance use disorders; Nondeclarative memory; Implicit memory; Decision-making; Basal ganglia; Orbitofrontal cortex; Executive functions

Results 1-2 (2)