Relation between HIV-2 proviral load and CD4+ lymphocyte count differs in monotypic and dual HIV infections

Abdoulaye Dieng Sarr, Stephen Popper, Ibou Thior, Donald J. Hamel, Jean Louis Sankalé, Tidiane Siby, Richard Marlink, Max Essex, Souleymane Mboup, Phyllis Kanki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Objective: To explore and compare the relations between proviral DNA load and CD4+ lymphocyte counts in both HIV-2 monotypic and HIV dual infection. Study Design/Methods: In Dakar, Senegal, where the HIV-1 and HIV-2 epidemics overlap, serum and peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) DNA samples were collected from registered femme sex workers and hospitalized patients. Sera were evaluated for reactivity to antigens of HIV-1 and HIV-2 by immunoblot; dual reactivity was confirmed with recombinant envelope peptides for HIV-1 and HIV-2. These samples were then subjected to HIV-1 and HIV-2 proviral DNA polymerase chain reaction (PCR). To evaluate the HIV-2 cellular proviral DNA loads, a quantitative competitive PCR (QC-PCR) was developed using nested primers to amplify the gag region of HIV-2. This assay used an internal competitor generated by inserting 25 bp in the first-round PCR target sequence. T-lymphocyte subset counts were estimated by flow cytometry for both HIV-2 monotypic and dually infected persons. Results: 35 HIV-2-infected and 33 dually seroreactive samples were evaluated in this study. The CD4+ lymphocyte counts were similar in both groups, with mean values of 449 ± 390 cells/mm3 for the HIV-2 monotypic infected persons and 476 ± 308 cells/mm3 among the dually infected persons. However, the median proviral loads differed significantly, with those in the HIV-2 group ranging from 63.2 to 669.8 copies/105 CD4+ cells and demonstrating an inverse correlation with CD4+ lymphocyte count. The HIV dually infected persons showed less variation in viral load, ranging from 9.9 to 43.3 copies/105 CD4+ cells. Among the HIV dually infected persons, low HIV-2 proviral load was correlated with low CD4+ lymphocyte counts. Conclusions: The HIV-2 proviral loads in HIV dually infected persons were significantly lower than those in HIV-2 monotypically infected individuals (P < .0001), despite comparable CD4+ lymphocyte counts. These results suggest that different HIV- 2 proviral dynamics prevail in HIV dual infection. (C) Lippincott Williams and Wilkins, Inc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)45-51
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Human Virology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1999
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Virology


  • CD4 lymphocyte counts
  • Dual infection
  • HIV-1
  • HIV-2
  • Proviral load


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