Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Why HIV causes life-long infection

Date:
July 15, 2014
Source:
Seattle Children's Hospital
Summary:
HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, has the ability to integrate into the human genome, making it extremely difficult to cure the infection. A new study found that when HIV integrates into genes involved with cancer, these cells tend to reproduce to a greater extent than others HIV-infected cells.

HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, has the ability to integrate into the human genome, making it extremely difficult to cure the infection. A new study by scientists at Seattle Children's Research Institute, University of Washington and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center found that when HIV integrates into genes involved with cancer, these cells tend to reproduce to a greater extent than others HIV-infected cells. The study was published on July 10, 2014 in the online edition of the journal Science.

"Our findings suggest that HIV may modify the function of some infected cells and that increased proliferation of these cells allows them to survive despite effective treatment," said Thor A. Wagner, M.D., of the Center for Global Infectious Disease Research at Seattle Children's Research Institute and co-lead author of the study. Wagner is also assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Washington.

"Using a test we developed to analyze both the HIV sequence and where it integrates into the chromosome, we found that when HIV inserts into cancer genes the cells containing the virus proliferate more than other HIV-infected cells," said Sherry McLaughlin, Ph.D., senior scientist in the Center for Global Infectious Disease Research at Seattle Children's Research Institute, research scientist in microbiology at the University of Washington, and co-lead author of the study. "This proliferation may maintain the virus in the body, so that if treatment is stopped, the virus can again become active." Since 1995 patients living with HIV have been able to stop the disease from progressing by taking a combination of three antiviral drugs to suppress replication of the virus to undetectable levels. In 1996, measurements of the decline of the virus-infected cells in people taking the medications predicted that complete suppression of the virus for three years would cure the infection. More recently it has become clear that despite effective treatment HIV-infected cells decline much more slowly. This new research suggests that the infection persists in part because the virus is integrated into certain human genes that favor survival.

According to Dr. Wagner, "This research brings us closer to understanding why HIV is such a long lasting infection and may lead us to new avenues to cure HIV." For the multi-year study, a total of 534 proviral integration sites were sequenced from three participants at three time-points each. HIV integration at the same chromosomal site was found in multiple cells within each participant throughout follow up, whereas no identical integration sites were shared by different participants, suggesting that HIV-infected cells proliferate.

Three approaches were used to explore whether the distribution of HIV integration sites observed was random or shaped by selective forces. Specifically, researchers examined the distribution of HIV integrations and found them to be in genes associated with cancer, regulation of cell proliferation, or cell survival more than expected.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Seattle Children's Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. T. A. Wagner, S. McLaughlin, K. Garg, C. Y. K. Cheung, B. B. Larsen, S. Styrchak, H. C. Huang, P. T. Edlefsen, J. I. Mullins, L. M. Frenkel. Proliferation of cells with HIV integrated into cancer genes contributes to persistent infection. Science, 2014; DOI: 10.1126/science.1256304

Cite This Page:

Seattle Children's Hospital. "Why HIV causes life-long infection." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140715214149.htm>.
Seattle Children's Hospital. (2014, July 15). Why HIV causes life-long infection. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140715214149.htm
Seattle Children's Hospital. "Why HIV causes life-long infection." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140715214149.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Orthodontist Mom Jennifer Salzer on the Best Time for Braces

Orthodontist Mom Jennifer Salzer on the Best Time for Braces

Working Mother (Oct. 22, 2014) Is your child ready? Video provided by Working Mother
Powered by NewsLook.com
U.S. Issues Ebola Travel Restrictions, Are Visa Bans Next?

U.S. Issues Ebola Travel Restrictions, Are Visa Bans Next?

Newsy (Oct. 22, 2014) Now that the U.S. is restricting travel from West Africa, some are dropping questions about a travel ban and instead asking about visa bans. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
US to Track Everyone Coming from Ebola Nations

US to Track Everyone Coming from Ebola Nations

AP (Oct. 22, 2014) Stepping up their vigilance against Ebola, federal authorities said Wednesday that everyone traveling into the US from Ebola-stricken nations will be monitored for symptoms for 21 days. (Oct. 22) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctors Help Paralysed Man Walk Again, Patient in Disbelief

Doctors Help Paralysed Man Walk Again, Patient in Disbelief

AFP (Oct. 22, 2014) Polish doctors describe how they helped a paralysed man walk again, with the patient in disbelief at the return of sensation to his legs. Duration: 1:04 Video provided by AFP
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