We investigated whether development of mutations leads to loss of CD8 T-cell recognition in HIV-1 infection and is possibly linked to alterations in HIV-1-specific CD4(+) T-cell responses in 2 HIV-infected individuals. In patient, H434 full genome sequencing of HIV-1 biological clones at early and late time points during disease progression showed development of fixed mutations in 16 predicted HIV-specific CTL epitopes. Loss of T-cell recognition and reactivity against wild-type and mutant epitopes was observed primarily for the HLA-B27-restricted KK10 epitope and HLA-A2-restricted SL9 epitope. Similarly, in patient H671, decreasing numbers of HLA-A3-restricted CD8(+) T cells specific for the wild-type RK9 epitope was observed after CTL escape. Only in patient H434 loss of CTL responses was paralleled by a decrease in HIV-specific IL-2(+) CD4(+) T-helper responses. This suggests that loss of T-cell reactivity may not be directly linked to HIV-specific CD4(+) T-cell responses but that increased viremia after CTL escape may influence CD4(+) T-helper responses.
- Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/genetics
- Genome, Viral
- HIV Infections/immunology
- Lymphocyte Count
- T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic/immunology
- T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/immunology