Journal article

NKT cell depletion in humans during early HIV infection

Caroline S Fernandez, Anthony D Kelleher, Robert Finlayson, Dale I Godfrey, Stephen J Kent



Natural killer T (NKT) cells bridge across innate and adaptive immune responses and have an important role in chronic viral infections such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). NKT cells are depleted during chronic HIV infection, but the timing, drivers and implications of this NKT cell depletion are poorly understood. We studied human peripheral blood NKT cell levels, phenotype and function in 31 HIV-infected subjects not on antiretroviral treatment from a mean of 4 months to 2 years after HIV infection. We found that peripheral CD4(+) NKT cells were substantially depleted and dysfunctional by 4 months after HIV infection. The depletion of CD4(+) NKT cells was more marked than the depleti..

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Awarded by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC)

Awarded by NHMRC postgraduate research scholarship

Funding Acknowledgements

We thank the study participants, Thakshila Amarasena (University of Melbourne), Pat Grey (study coordinator, Kirby Institute), Ansari Shaik (data manager, Kirby Institute) and recruiting physicians Mark Bloch (Holdsworth House Medical Practice), Tim Read (Melbourne Sexual Health Center), Jennifer Hoy (Alfred Hospital), David Cooper (St Vincent's Hospital) and David Baker (East Sydney Doctors). This work was supported by Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) awards 510448, 455350, 1013667, 454309, 508309, and an NHMRC postgraduate research scholarship to CSF (629002).