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Abstract Title:

Heavy Cannabis Use Associated With Reduction in Activated and Inflammatory Immune Cell Frequencies in Antiretroviral Therapy-Treated Human Immunodeficiency Virus-Infected Individuals.

Abstract Source:

Clin Infect Dis. 2018 Feb 17. Epub 2018 Feb 17. PMID: 29471387

Abstract Author(s):

Jennifer A Manuzak, Toni M Gott, Jay S Kirkwood, Ernesto Coronado, Tiffany Hensley-McBain, Charlene Miller, Ryan K Cheu, Ann C Collier, Nicholas T Funderburg, Jeffery N Martin, Michael C Wu, Nina Isoherranen, Peter W Hunt, Nichole R Klatt

Article Affiliation:

Jennifer A Manuzak

Abstract:

Background: Cannabis is a widely used drug in the United States, and the frequency of cannabis use in the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected population is disproportionately high. Previous human and macaque studies suggest that cannabis may have an impact on plasma viral load; however, the relationship between cannabis use and HIV-associated systemic inflammation and immune activation has not been well defined.

Methods: The impact of cannabis use on peripheral immune cell frequency, activation, and function was assessed in 198 HIV-infected, antiretroviral-treated individuals by flow cytometry. Individuals were categorized into heavy, medium, or occasional cannabis users or noncannabis users based on the amount of the cannabis metabolite 11-nor-carboxy-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC-COOH) detected in plasma by mass spectrometry.

Results: Heavy cannabis users had decreased frequencies of human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DR+CD38+CD4+ and CD8+ T-cell frequencies, compared to frequencies of these cells in non-cannabis-using individuals. Heavy cannabis users had decreased frequencies of intermediate and nonclassical monocyte subsets, as well as decreased frequencies of interleukin 23- and tumor necrosis factor-α-producing antigen-presenting cells.

Conclusions: While the clinical implications are unclear, our findings suggest that cannabis use is associated with a potentially beneficial reduction in systemic inflammation and immune activation in the context of antiretroviral-treated HIV infection.

Study Type : Human Study

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