PloS one 2017 01 2012(1) e0170344 doi 10.1371/journal.pone.0170344
Since the early 1990s human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) emerged as a global health pandemic, with sub-Saharan Africa the hardest hit. While the successful roll-out of antiretroviral (ARV) therapy provided significant relief to HIV-positive individuals, such treatment can also elicit damaging side-effects. Here especially HIV protease inhibitors (PIs) are implicated in the onset of cardio-metabolic complications such as type-2 diabetes and coronary heart disease. As there is a paucity of data regarding suitable co-treatments within this context, this preclinical study investigated whether resveratrol (RSV), aspirin (ASP) or vitamin C (VitC) co-treatment is able to blunt side-effects in a rat model of chronic PI exposure (Lopinavir/Ritonavir treatment for 4 months). Body weights and weight gain, blood metabolite levels (total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides), echocardiography and cardiac mitochondrial respiration were assessed in PI-treated rats ± various co-treatments. Our data reveal that PI treatment significantly lowered body weight and cardiac respiratory function while no significant changes were found for heart function and blood metabolite levels. Moreover, all co-treatments ameliorated the PI-induced decrease in body weight after 4 months of PI treatment, while RSV co-treatment enhanced cardiac mitochondrial respiratory capacity in PI-treated rats. This pilot study therefore provides novel hypotheses regarding RSV co-treatment that should be further assessed in greater detail.