Skip to main content

Changes in immune activation in the T Cell compartments of HIV HCV coinfected patients during PEG IFN RBV treatment

Chronic activation of CD8 T-cell compartment is critical during HCV-HIV-1 coinfection. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of pegylated-interferon (PEG-IFN) in combination with ribavirin (RBV) on immune activation in HCV-HIV-coinfected patients.

T cell phenotype (CD8+CD38+,CD8+DR+) was quantified using flow cytometry analysis,. Measurements were performed at day one of treatment (Baseline, BL), then at week (W)12,W24,W48 and W24 post-treatment. HVC viral load was measured using a PCR (COBAS TaqMan 48; Roche), exhibiting a limit of detection at12 IU/ml. Statistical analysis was performed with SPSS 17.0.

11 pts (64% of males; median age 47.4 [45.1-51]) with a median follow up for HCV infection of 14.7y [11.7; 19.1]) were evaluated. All were treated for HIV infection (PI- based regimen: 63.6%) with an HIV-VL < 40copies/ml. Median CD4 and CD8 T cells count at BL was 886/mm3 [671; 1008] and 825/mm3 [530; 1843], respectively. HCV genotype was 1 for 63.6%, 3 in 27.3% and 4 in one pt. HCV VL at BL was 5.9 [4.6; 6.7] (log UI/ml). Up to now, 2 pts stopped HCV treatment at W2 and W4, 9 pts have reached W24, and 5 of them are between W24 and W48. The results at W12 and W24 are presented in the table. We observed a significant decrease of the number of circulating total lymphocytes and CD4T cells in absolute value (p=0.008), but a significant increase in the percentage of CD4+ T-cells and a significant decrease in the percentage of CD8+ T cells at W24. HCV VL was negative for all of them.

These preliminary results show that the immune system hyperactivation driving by HCV disease can be reduced with a control of HCV replication. However, we observed a discrepancy in the evolution of CD8+CD38+ and CD8+DR+ expression at W12 which remains at W24.These results have to be confirmed with the next measurement performed at W48 and W24 post treatment.

Table 1 Table 1

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Amélie Menard.

Rights and permissions

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Menard, A., Brunet, C., Obry, V. et al. Changes in immune activation in the T Cell compartments of HIV HCV coinfected patients during PEG IFN RBV treatment. Retrovirology 9, P56 (2012).

Download citation


  • Immune Activation
  • Total Lymphocyte
  • Chronic Activation
  • CD4T Cell
  • COBAS TaqMan