Current HIV/AIDS reports 15(2) 127-135 doi 10.1007/s11904-018-0382-3
PURPOSE OF REVIEW
Acute HIV infection is characterized by high-level viral replication throughout the body’s lymphoid system, particularly in gut-associated lymphoid tissues resulting in damage to structural components of gut tissue. This damage is irreversible and believed to contribute to the development of immune deficiencies. Antiretroviral therapy (ART) does not restore gut structure and function. Studies in macaques point to an alternative treatment strategy that may ameliorate gut damage. Integrin αβmediates the homing of lymphocytes to gut tissues. Vedolizumab, a monoclonal antibody (mAb) antagonist of αβ, has demonstrated efficacy and has been approved for the treatment of inflammatory bowel disease in humans. Here, we describe our current knowledge, and the gaps in our understanding, of the role of αβin HIV pathogenesis and treatment.
When administered to macaques prior to infection, a nonhuman primate analogue of vedolizumab prevents transmission of SIV. In combination with ART, this mAb facilitates durable virologic control following treatment interruption. Targeting αβrepresents a novel therapeutic approach to prevent and treat HIV infection.