CD4+ T lymphocytes of individuals infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) exhibit a qualitative defect in their ability to mount memory responses to previously encountered antigens although their responses to mitogens remain normal. T cells responsible for memory responses can be distinguished from naive T cells based on differential expression of isoforms of the tyrosine phosphatase CD45. It has been suggested that memory CD4+ T cells from infected individuals have a greater virus burden than naive CD4+ T cells and that this accounts for the loss of recall responses in infected individuals. However, it has been unclear whether naive and memory T cells are equally susceptible to infection and to the cytopathic effects of the virus. We therefore infected highly purified resting naive and memory CD4+ T cells from HIV-1-seronegative individuals with HIV-1(LAI). Infected cells were then stimulated with phytohemagglutinin to render them permissive for viral replication. Cell viability and growth rate were monitored for 8 to 10 days as indicators of cytopathic effects induced by HIV-1(LAI). Our results indicated that naive and memory CD4+ T cells display marked differences in susceptibility to the cytopathic effects induced by HIV-1(LAI) infection. The cytopathic effects induced by HIV-1(LAI) were much more severe in memory CD4+ T cells than in naive CD4+ T cells. Differential cytopathic effects in naive and memory T cells were not due to differences in virus entry into and replication in these cell populations. Rather, memory cells were more susceptible to cytopathic effects. Pronounced cytopathic effects in memory cells were clearly detectable at 7 day postinfection. Cell death occurred at the single-cell level and was not accompanied by syncytium formation. The growth rate of infected memory CD4+ T cells was also severely compromised compared to that of naive CD4+ T cells, whereas the growth rates of both uninfected naive and memory. CD4+ T cells were approximately the same. At least a portion of the dying cells exhibited biochemical changes characteristic of apoptosis. These results suggest that the selective functional defects present in the memory CD4+ T-cell subset of HIV-l- infected individuals may in part be the result of the greater susceptibility of memory. T cells to cytopathic effects induced by HIV-l.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Insect Science