A wide variety of infections, including bacteria, viruses, fungi and protozoa occur in the immunocompromised condition associated with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection and acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Although these opportunistic infections are believed
to arise as an effect of the immunodeficiency, these microbes sometimes promote the disease progression of HIV-1 infection by enhancing viral replication or modulating host immune responses. Here we review the experimental and clinical evidence supporting such causal relationships associated
with periodontogenic bacteria. Periodontal disease, caused by subgingival infection with oral anaerobic bacteria, typically Porphyromonas gingivalis (P. gingivalis) belonging to the phylum Bacteroidetes, is found worldwide and is one of the most prevalent microbial diseases of mankind. Emerging
evidence implicates the involvement of P. gingivalis infection in the progression of HIV-1 infection. We demonstrate that P. gingivalis can induce HIV-1 reactivation via chromatin modification, and that the bacterial metabolite butyric acid produced in anaerobic conditions is responsible for
this effect. These findings suggest that periodontal diseases could act as a risk factor for HIV-1 reactivation in infected individuals and might contribute to AIDS progression. Furthermore, it would imply that prevention and early treatment of periodontitis involving P. gingivalis infection
could effectively block further clinical progression of AIDS.
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Document Type: Research Article
Department of Microbiology, Division of Immunology and Pathobiology, Dental Research Center, Nihon University School of Dentistry, 1-8-13 Kanda-Surugadai, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 101-8310, Japan.
April 1, 2012
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Current HIV Research aims to cover all the latest and outstanding developments of HIV research. We invite comprehensive review articles and novel, pioneering work in the basic and clinical fields on all areas of HIV research, including virus replication and gene expression, HIV assembly, virus-cell interaction, viral pathogenesis, epidemiology and transmission, anti-retroviral therapy and adherence, drug discovery, the latest developments in HIV/AIDS vaccines and animal models, mechanisms and interactions with AIDS related diseases, social and public health issues related to HIV disease, and prevention of viral infection. Each issue of the journal contains a series of timely in-depth reviews and original research written by leaders in the field covering a range of current topics on HIV research. Periodically, the journal will invite guest editors to devote an issue on a particular area of HIV research of great interest that increases our understanding of the virus and its complex interaction with the host.
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