Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Link between HIV infection, coronary artery disease

Date:
March 31, 2014
Source:
Johns Hopkins Medicine
Summary:
Men with long-term HIV infections are at higher risk than uninfected men of developing plaque in their coronary arteries, regardless of their other risk factors for coronary artery disease, according to results of a study. The finding is important, investigators say, because advances in treatment have led to long-term survival of people living with HIV/AIDS and the emergence of chronic, age-related heart and other diseases among this population. Coronary artery disease may lead to heart attacks.

Men with long-term HIV infections are at higher risk than uninfected men of developing plaque in their coronary arteries, regardless of their other risk factors for coronary artery disease, according to results of a study led by Johns Hopkins researchers. A report on the research appears in the April 1 issue of Annals of Internal Medicine.

The finding is important, investigators say, because advances in treatment have led to long-term survival of people living with HIV/AIDS and the emergence of chronic, age-related heart and other diseases among this population. Coronary artery disease may lead to heart attacks.

Although previous studies suggested a link between HIV infection and cardiovascular disease, results have been inconclusive.

To nail down the connection, the Johns Hopkins-led team did a comprehensive evaluation of coronary atherosclerosis in HIV-infected men using coronary computed tomography angiography (CTA), an advanced type of CT scan of the arteries that nourish the heart.

The researchers studied men already part of the Multicenter AIDS Cohort Study, or MACS, an ongoing study of HIV infection in homosexual and bisexual men before and after they began treatment in the Baltimore/Washington, Chicago, Pittsburgh and Los Angeles areas. The study population included 618 HIV-infected men and 383 uninfected men who were 40 to 70 years old and had had no prior surgery to restore blood flow to the coronary arteries.

"MACS participants are a very good population for this study, because the control group comprises uninfected men drawn from the same population of men who are infected," says Wendy S. Post, M.D., M.S., the lead author of the study. Post, a cardiologist, is a professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and a professor of epidemiology at the Bloomberg School of Public Health.

"This means the uninfected men are also at risk for HIV and share similar environmental exposures and lifestyles," she says.

Specifically, Post and the other investigators measured the presence and extent of plaque in the heart arteries and also stenosis -- the abnormal narrowing of blood vessels -- and sought to determine if plaques causing the narrowing were noncalcified, partly calcified (less than 50 percent calcified) or calcified. Coronary stenosis that narrows the artery by more than 50 percent indicates the presence of advanced atherosclerosis.

The presence of noncalcified and partly calcified plaques is significant, because they are more likely than calcified plaques to rupture and trigger development of a clot that reduces or blocks blood flow to the heart. Since noncalcified plaque is not visible using standard CTA, the researchers intravenously injected a special contrast dye that enhances the visibility of these plaques.

The researchers found that noncalcified coronary artery plaque was more prevalent and extensive in HIV-infected men, suggesting increased risk for heart attacks. HIV-infected men had a greater prevalence of any plaque, especially noncalcified plaque, than uninfected men, even after accounting for other coronary artery disease risk factors such as high cholesterol, smoking and high blood pressure.

Among HIV-infected men, coronary artery stenosis greater than 50 percent was associated with more advanced HIV and longer treatment with highly active antiretroviral treatment (HAART), a commonly prescribed HIV drug cocktail.

These results emphasize the importance of assessing and modifying traditional cardiovascular risk factors in this population, especially in men with more advanced HIV, Post says. Future studies will try to determine whether earlier treatment with HAART might make it less likely that people with HIV will develop heart disease.

Post said her team hopes to repeat the CT angiograms in this population to measure progression of atherosclerosis and figure out why HIV-infected men have more noncalcified plaque.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Johns Hopkins Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Wendy S. Post, Matthew Budoff, Lawrence Kingsley, Frank J. Palella, Mallory D. Witt, Xiuhong Li, Richard T. George, Todd T. Brown, Lisa P. Jacobson. Associations Between HIV Infection and Subclinical Coronary Atherosclerosis. Annals of Internal Medicine, 2014; 160 (7): 458 DOI: 10.7326/M13-1754

Cite This Page:

Johns Hopkins Medicine. "Link between HIV infection, coronary artery disease." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 March 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140331180610.htm>.
Johns Hopkins Medicine. (2014, March 31). Link between HIV infection, coronary artery disease. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140331180610.htm
Johns Hopkins Medicine. "Link between HIV infection, coronary artery disease." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/03/140331180610.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Aimed at reducing sexual assaults on college campuses, California has adopted a new law changing the standard of consent for sexual activity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Researchers looked at 1,500 blood samples and determined people who developed pancreatic cancer had more branched chain amino acids. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins