HIV-1 and Cocaine

Shilpa Buch, Honghong Yao and Sabita Roy

in The Neurology of AIDS

Third edition

Published on behalf of Oxford University Press

Published in print December 2011 | ISBN: 9780195399349
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199965199 | DOI:
HIV-1 and Cocaine

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  • Disorders of the Nervous System
  • Infectious Diseases


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Cocaine has multiple and complex effects on cells infected with HIV-1. Many of these effects appear to promote HIV-1 infectivity and disease progression. Cocaine promotes virus replication in mononuclear phagocytes and, through its effects on IL-10, tends to promote a Th2 cellular phenotype, which benefits CXCR4-utilizing viruses. Cocaine can also up-regulate the CCR5 receptor, and it acts synergistically with the toxic viral proteins Tat and gp120, exacerbating neuronal apoptosis. Additionally, cocaine exerts potent effects on microvascular permeability, thereby affecting the influx of virus-infected inflammatory cells into brain parenchyma. Epidemiological studies of drug abusers with AIDS link abuse of cocaine, even more than other drugs, to increased incidence of HIV seroprevalence and progression to AIDS. This chapter summarizes a wide range of cell culture and murine animal studies that have provided insight into the interactions of HIV-1 and cocaine in the pathogenesis of HAND.

Chapter.  6747 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Disorders of the Nervous System ; Infectious Diseases

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