pDC Activation and Chronic Immune Activation in AIDS

Award amount: 40,000.00

Richard Dunham, PhD, Recipient

HIV infection causes widespread persistent inflammation that leads to the progressive loss of function in the immune system and the onset of AIDS. The objective of this proposal is to investigate the interaction of HIV with the innate immune system and how this interaction impacts persistent inflammation during HIV infection. We will dissect the molecular events subsequent to activation of pDC by HIV and the impact that this sequence has on T cell function and differentiation. In addition, we will investigate the relationship between capacity for pDC activation by HIV and disease progression in HIV-infected individuals. The data generated in Aim 1 will be analyzed using non-parametric two sample techniques (Mann-Whitney U test, Wilcoxon Rank Sum test) or multi-sample comparison techniques (Kruskal-Wallis or Friedman tests). The data in Aim 2a will be tested with the same two sample or multi-sample techniques as above and Aim 2b will be performed using the Spearman Correlation. All studies will use a p=0.05. This preliminary study will last one year, with the expectation that these data will lead to the formulation of a more extensive proposal in the future.