Probiotics Differently Affect Gut-Associated Lymphoid Tissue Indolamine-2,3-Dioxygenase mRNA and Cerebrospinal Fluid Neopterin Levels in Antiretroviral-Treated HIV-1 Infected Patients: A Pilot Study.
Int J Mol Sci. 2016;17(10). Epub 2016 Sep 27. PMID: 27689995
Recently the tryptophan pathway has been considered an important determinant of HIV-1 infected patients' quality of life, due to the toxic effects of its metabolites on the central nervous system (CNS). Since the dysbiosis described in HIV-1 patients might be responsible for the microbial translocation, the chronic immune activation, and the altered utilization of tryptophan observed in these individuals, we speculated a correlation between high levels of immune activation markers in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of HIV-1 infected patients and the over-expression of indolamine-2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) at the gut mucosal surface. In order to evaluate this issue, we measured the levels of neopterin in CSF, and the expression of IDO mRNA in gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT), in HIV-1-infected patients on effective combined antiretroviral therapy (cART), at baseline and after six months of probiotic dietary management. We found a significant reduction of neopterin and IDO mRNA levels after the supplementation with probiotic. Since the results for the use of adjunctive therapies to reduce the levels of immune activation markers in CSF have been disappointing so far, our pilot study showing the efficacy of this specific probiotic product should be followed by a larger confirmatory trial.