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Immunology - Infectious Diseases - Urology - Virology

Direct Phenotypical and Functional Dysregulation of Primary Human B Cells by Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Type 1 In Vitro
Published: Monday, July 02, 2012
Author: Ana Judith Perisé-Barrios et al.

by Ana Judith Perisé-Barrios, María Ángeles Muñoz-Fernandez, Marjorie Pion


Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) induces a general dysregulation of immune system. Dysregulation of B cell compartment is generally thought to be induced by HIV-related immune activation and lymphopenia. However, a direct influence of HIV-1 particles on B cells was recently proposed as the third pathway of B cells dysregulation.

Methods/Principal Findings

We evaluated the direct and specific consequences of HIV-1 contact on activation, survival, proliferation and phenotype of primary B cells in vitro. Moreover, we examined expression of activation-induced cytidine deaminase (AID) mRNA that is responsible for class switch recombination (CSR) and somatic hypermutation (SHM). Here, we report that changes observed in cellular proliferation, phenotypes and activation of B cells could be caused by direct contact between HIV-1 particles and primary B cells in vitro. Finally, direct HIV-1-derived B cells activation led to the increase of AID mRNA expression and its subsequent CSR function was detected in vitro.


We showed that HIV-1 could directly induce primary B cells dysregulation triggering phenotypical and functional abilities of B cells in vitro that could explain in some extent early B-cell abnormalities in HIV disease.