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Transcriptional profiling of CD4 T cells identifies distinct subgroups of HIV-1 elite controllers.

Type of publication Peer-reviewed
Publikationsform Original article (peer-reviewed)
Publication date 2011
Author Vigneault Francois, Woods Matthew, Buzon Maria J, Li Chun, Pereyra Florencia, Crosby Seth D, Rychert Jennifer, Church George, Martinez-Picado Javier, Rosenberg Eric S, Telenti Amalio, Yu Xu G, Lichterfeld Mathias,
Project Host evolutionary genomics of HIV-1 and other retroviruses
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Original article (peer-reviewed)

Journal Journal of virology
Volume (Issue) 85(6)
Page(s) 3015 - 9
Title of proceedings Journal of virology
DOI 10.1128/JVI.01846-10


Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) elite controllers maintain undetectable levels of viral replication in the absence of antiretroviral therapy (ART), but their underlying immunological and virological characteristics may vary. Here, we used a whole-genome transcriptional profiling approach to characterize gene expression signatures of CD4 T cells from an unselected cohort of elite controllers. The transcriptional profiles for the majority of elite controllers were similar to those of ART-treated patients but different from those of HIV-1-negative persons. Yet, a smaller proportion of elite controllers showed an alternative gene expression pattern that was indistinguishable from that of HIV-1-negative persons but different from that of highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART)-treated individuals. Elite controllers with the latter gene expression signature had significantly higher CD4 T cell counts and lower levels of HIV-1-specific CD8(+) T cell responses but did not significantly differ from other elite controllers in terms of HLA class I alleles, HIV-1 viral loads determined by ultrasensitive single-copy PCR assays, or chemokine receptor polymorphisms. Thus, these data identify a specific subgroup of elite controllers whose immunological and gene expression characteristics approximate those of HIV-1-negative persons.