Publications & Reports

No increase in hepatitis B virus (HBV)-specific CD8+ T cells in patients with HIV-1-HBV coinfections following HBV-active highly active antiretroviral therapy.

Crane M, Sirivichayakul S, Chang JJ, Avihingsanon A, Ubolyam S, Buranapraditkun S, Thantiworasit P, Wightman F, Locarnini S, Matthews G, Dore GJ, Ruxrungtham K, Lewin SR
Department of Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia.


Following treatment of hepatitis B virus (HBV) monoinfection, HBV-specific T-cell responses increase significantly; however, little is known about the recovery of HBV-specific T-cell responses following HBV-active highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) in HIV-HBV coinfected patients. HIV-HBV coinfected patients who were treatment naive and initiating HBV-active HAART were recruited as part of a prospective cohort study in Thailand and followed for 48 weeks (n = 24). Production of gamma interferon (IFN-gamma) and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-alpha) in both HBV- and HIV-specific CD8(+) T cells was quantified using intracellular cytokine staining on whole blood. Following HBV-active HAART, the median (interquartile range) log decline from week 0 to week 48 for HBV DNA was 5.8 log (range, 3.4 to 6.7) IU/ml, and for HIV RNA it was 3.1 (range, 2.9 to 3.5) log copies/ml (P < 0.001 for both). The frequency of HIV Gag-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses significantly decreased (IFN-gamma, P < 0.001; TNF-alpha, P = 0.05). In contrast, there was no significant change in the frequency (IFN-gamma, P = 0.21; TNF-alpha, P = 0.61; and IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha, P = 0.11) or magnitude (IFN-gamma, P = 0.13; TNF-alpha, P = 0.13; and IFN-gamma and TNF-alpha, P = 0.13) of HBV-specific CD8(+) T-cell responses over 48 weeks of HBV-active HAART. Of the 14 individuals who were HBV e antigen (HBeAg) positive, 5/14 (36%) lost HBeAg during the 48 weeks of follow-up. HBV-specific CD8(+) T cells were detected in 4/5 (80%) of patients prior to HBeAg loss. Results from this study show no sustained change in the HBV-specific CD8(+) T-cell response following HBV-active HAART. These findings may have implications for the duration of treatment of HBV in HIV-HBV coinfected patients, particularly in HBeAg-positive disease.


  • Journal: Journal of Virology
  • Published: 01/03/2010
  • Volume: 84
  • Issue: 6
  • Pagination: 2657-2665

Health Issue