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  • Open Access

Resistance to HIV-1 infection among HIV-exposed seronegative partners in HIV-discordant couples is associated with higher frequency of CD8+ T cells expressing CD107a and b molecules

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BMC Infectious Diseases201414 (Suppl 2) :P67

  • Published:

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  • Flow Cytometry
  • Host Resistance
  • Unexposed Subject
  • Infected Partner
  • Seronegative Partner


Some individuals remain persistently HIV-seronegative despite multiple high-risk exposures to the virus (HIV-exposed seronegatives or ESN). Different mechanisms may influence host resistance to HIV infection. HIV-specific CTL has been suggested to play a role in HIV-1 protection.


Ten HIV-1 ESN in HIV-discordant couples were enrolled at the Fann University hospital, Dakar, Senegal. Thirty HIV-1 infected patients (10 HIV-1 non transmitted partners in discordant coupes and 20 HIV-1 infected partners in HIV-concordant couples) and 10 HIV-negative unexposed subjects were included as controls. Levels of CD107a and b, and CD107a/b+IFN-γ+ in CD8+ T cells sub-set were measured in fresh PBMC by flow cytometry, in the presence or absence of stimulation with SEB.


HIV-negative subjects (10 ESN subjects and 10 HIV-negative controls) showed significantly lower percentages of CD107a/b+ expression on CD8+ T-cells than did HIV-1 infected patients (2.9% vs. 11.6%, P = 0.016). Similar conclusions were reached when expression of CD107a/b+IFN-γ+ were analyzed. Interestingly, HIV-1 ESN subjects showed higher frequency of CD8+ T cells expressing CD107a and b compared with unexposed HIV-negative controls (11.6% vs. 1.3%, P = 0.018), concordant with production of intracellular IFN-γ.


Taken together, our data suggest that resistance to HIV-1 infection among ESN partners in HIV-discordant couples may be associated with HIV-specific CTL responses.

Authors’ Affiliations

Cheikh Anta Diop University, Laboratory of Immunology, CHU Le Dantec, Dakar, Senegal
Cheikh Anta Diop University, Clinic of Infectious Diseases, CHU Fann, Senegal
Laboratory of Immunology, Department of Microbiology, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium


© Padane et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2014

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver ( applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.