Lung Cancer Treatment May Successfully Deplete HIV Reservoir

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Researchers observed a progressive and modest increase in the plasma HIV load up to 101 copies/mL at day 45.
Researchers observed a progressive and modest increase in the plasma HIV load up to 101 copies/mL at day 45.

HealthDay News — Nivolumab treatment for non-small-cell lung cancer may induce successful depletion of HIV reservoir, according to a letter to the editor published in the Annals of Oncology.

Amélie Guihot, MD, from the Hôpital Pitié Salpêtrière in Paris, and colleagues describe the case of a 51-year-old smoker, who had HIV infection since 1995, and was diagnosed with stage IIIa non-small-cell lung cancer in May 2015. Less than 6 months after the end of adjuvant chemotherapy, relapse occurred and he was treated with nivolumab as a second-line agent in December 2016. The pre-treatment plasma HIV load was undetectable under emtricitabine, tenofovir, and dolutegravir.

The authors observed a progressive and modest increase in the plasma HIV load up to 101 copies/mL at day 45, followed by a decrease to 31 copies/mL at day 120. A slight increase in T cell activation was seen between day 14 and 45, while decreases were seen in PD1 + CD4 and CD8 T cells at day 30. A marked increase was seen in the frequencies of HIV RT− and Nef-specific CD8 T cells from day 30 to 120. A drastic and persistent decrease was seen in the cell-associated HIV-DNA from 369 at day 0 to 30 copies per 106 cells at day 120.

"This first report of a successful depletion of the HIV reservoirs opens new therapeutic perspectives towards an HIV cure," the authors wrote.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

Reference

Guihot A, Marcelin AG, Massiani MA, et al. Drastic decrease of the HIV reservoir in a patient treated with nivolumab for lung cancer [published online December 1, 2018] Ann Oncol. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdx696.

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