Reversibility of the pathological changes in the follicular dendritic cell network with treatment of HIV-1 infection

Zhi Qiang Zhang, Troy Schuler, Winston Cavert, Daan W. Notermans, Kristin Gebhard, Keith Henry, Diane V. Havlir, Huldrych F. Günthard, Joseph K. Wong, Susan Little, Mark B. Feinberg, Michael A. Polis, Lewis K. Schrager, Timothy W. Schacker, Douglas D. Richman, Lawrence Corey, Sven A. Danner, Ashley T. Haase*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Over the course of HIV-1 infection, the lymphoid follicles where the humoral immune response is generated initially increase in size and number and then progressively involute. In advanced disease, the network of the processes of follicular dendritic cells (FDCs) that serve as antigen repositories and anatomical substrate for B and T cells and antigen to interact is destroyed, contributing to the breakdown of the immune system. Because destruction of FDCs is associated with deposition of HIV-1, and much of the virus can be cleared from the network with antiretroviral therapy, we investigated the reversibility of damage. We measured the immunohistochemically stainable FDC compartment by quantitative image analysis, and we documented changes in this compartment at different stages of disease. We show that treatment, initiated even at advanced stages of HIV- 1 disease, can slowly reverse pathological changes in the FDC network.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5169-5172
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 27 Apr 1999

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