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1.  Association of Low Level Viremia with Inflammation and Mortality in HIV-Infected Adults 
PLoS ONE  2011;6(11):e26320.
Background
Whether HIV viremia, particularly at low levels is associated with inflammation, increased coagulation, and all-cause mortality is unclear.
Methods
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.
Results
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.
Conclusion
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.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0026320
PMCID: PMC3206804  PMID: 22073156
2.  Inflammation and Mortality in HIV-infected Adults: Analysis of the FRAM Study Cohort 
Objective
To determine the association of inflammatory markers, fibrinogen and C-reactive protein (CRP), with 5-year mortality risk.
Methods
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.
Results
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.
Conclusion
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.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181e66216
PMCID: PMC2955817  PMID: 20581689
HIV; inflammation; C-reactive protein; fibrinogen; mortality
3.  Association of HIV infection, demographic and cardiovascular risk factors with all-cause mortality in the recent HAART era 
Objective
To determine the relationship of HIV infection, demographic and cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factors with mortality in the recent HAART era.
Methods
Vital status was ascertained from 2004–2007 in 922 HIV-infected and 280 controls in the Study of Fat Redistribution and Metabolic Change in HIV infection; 469 HIV-infected were included in analysis comparing HIV to similar age controls. Multivariable exponential survival regression (adjusting for demographic and CVD factors) estimated hazard ratios (HR) for death.
Results
After 5 years of follow-up, the overall adjusted mortality HR was 3.4[95% confidence interval (CI):1.35,8.5]; HR was 6.3 among HIV-infected with CD4<200(95% CI:2.2,18.2), 4.3 with CD4 200–350(95% CI:1.14,16.0), and 2.3 with CD4>350(95% CI:0.78,6.9). Among HIV-infected, current smoking (HR=2.73 vs. never smokers, 95% CI:1.64,4.5) and older age (HR=1.61 per decade, 95% CI:1.27,2.1) were independent risk factors for death; higher baseline CD4 count was associated with lower risk (HR=0.65 per CD4 doubling, 95% CI:0.58,0.73).
Conclusion
HIV infection was associated with a 3-fold mortality risk compared to controls after adjustment for demographic and CVD risk factors. In addition to low baseline CD4 count, older age and current smoking were strong and independent predictors of mortality in a US cohort of HIV-infected participants in clinical care.
doi:10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181b79d22
PMCID: PMC2799541  PMID: 19738484
Cardiovascular disease; Mortality; HIV infection; FRAM

Results 1-3 (3)