The effect of progesterone levels and pregnancy on HIV-1 coreceptor expression

Jeanne S. Sheffield, George D. Wendel, Donald D. McIntire, Michael V. Norgard

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations


The upregulation of HIV-1 co-receptor expression during certain clinical settings may explain the predisposition of individuals to enhanced HIV-1 acquisition. We sought to determine the effect of estrogen and progesterone on the HIV-1 coreceptors, CCR5 and CXCR4. Co-receptor expression on CD3- and CD14-positive cells obtained systemically and locally (genital tissue in women) was determined in men, pre- and post-menopausal women, pregnant women in each trimester and in labor. CCR5 on both CD3- and CD14-positive cells was highest in pregnant women, and increased as gestation advanced ( P <.01 and P <.001, respectively). Progesterone levels were significantly associated with CCR5 expression on PBMCs ( P <.03 for CD3-positive, and P <.002 for CD14-positive cells) and from cells isolated from tissue ( P <.001).CCR5 mRNA expression correlated with the cell surface marker expression from blood and tissue. These findings suggest that pregnancy and other high progesterone states may predispose women to HIV-1 acquisition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20-31
Number of pages12
JournalReproductive Sciences
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • HIV acquisition
  • HIV-1 coreceptor
  • Progesterone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


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