Correlates of nontransmission in US women at high risk of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 infection through sexual exposure

Academic Article


  • Seventeen women who were persistently uninfected by human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1), despite repeated sexual exposure, and 12 of their HIV-positive male partners were studied for antiviral correlates of nontransmission. Thirteen women had ≥1 immune response in the form of CD8 cell noncytotoxic HIV-1 suppressive activity, proliferative CD4 cell response to HIV antigens, CD8 cell production of macrophage inflammatory protein-1β, or ELISPOT assay for HIV-1-specific interferon-γ secretion. The male HIV-positive partners without AIDS had extremely high CD8 cell counts. All 8 male partners evaluated showed CD8 cell-related cytotoxic HIV suppressive activity. Reduced CD4 cell susceptibility to infection, neutralizing antibody, single-cell cytokine production, and local antibody in the women played no apparent protective role. These observations suggest that the primary protective factor is CD8 cell activity in both the HIV-positive donor and the HIV-negative partner. These findings have substantial implications for vaccine development.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 25790409
  • Author List

  • Skurnick JH; Palumbo P; DeVico A; Shacklett BL; Valentine FT; Merges M; Kamin-Lewis R; Mestecky J; Denny T; Lewis GK
  • Start Page

  • 428
  • End Page

  • 438
  • Volume

  • 185
  • Issue

  • 4