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Open Access Short report

Dysfunctional HDL and progression of atherosclerosis in HIV-1-infected and -uninfected adults

Theodoros Kelesidis12, Otto O Yang12, Michelle A Kendall3, Howard N Hodis4 and Judith S Currier15*

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

2 Department of Microbiology, Immunology, and Molecular Genetics, David Geffen School of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

3 Center for Biostatistics in AIDS Research, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA

4 Atherosclerosis Research Unit, Department of Medicine and Preventive Medicine, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA, USA

5 Center for Clinical AIDS Research and Education, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA, 9911 W. Pico, Suite 980, Los Angeles, CA 90035, USA

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Lipids in Health and Disease 2013, 12:23  doi:10.1186/1476-511X-12-23

Published: 5 March 2013

Abstract

Background

HDL function rather than absolute level may be a more accurate indicator for risk of developing atherosclerosis. Dysfunctional HDL has increased redox activity and reduced antioxidant properties, but it is unknown whether abnormal HDL function is associated with progression of atherosclerosis in HIV-1-infected subjects.

Findings

We retrospectively measured serum HDL function in 91 subjects from a prospective 3-year study of carotid artery intima-media thickness (CIMT), which enrolled triads of risk factor-matched persons that were HIV-1-uninfected (n=36) or HIV-1+ with (n=29) or without (n=26) protease inhibitor (PI)-based therapy for ≥ 2 years. HDL function was assessed using a biochemical assay that measures the oxidation of dihydrorhodamine 123 (DHR oxidation rate, DOR), in which higher DOR readout corresponds to dysfunctional HDL phenotype.

There were no significant associations between DOR and HIV-1 infection. In univariate analysis of 55 HIV-1-infected subjects, greater waist circumference and lower serum HDL were significantly associated with higher baseline levels of DOR (p=0.01). These subjects had significant increases in levels of DOR over time (3 years) that were associated with white race (p=0.03), higher nadir CD4 count (p<0.001), and lower baseline CIMT (p<0.001). Lower baseline HDL levels, but not function of HDL (p>0.1) (DOR), were significantly associated (p=0.02) with progression of CIMT.

Conclusion

In a small matched cohort study of HIV-1-infected subjects who had a low cardiovascular risk profile, HDL function changed over time and was independently associated with anthropometric parameters of obesity but not with progression of CIMT.

Keywords:
HIV-1; High density lipoprotein (HDL); HDL function; Dysfunctional HDL; Redox activity; Atherosclerosis