The principal neutralizing domain (PND) for antibody response is located within the V3 variable region of gp 120 and can also stimulate T-cell responses. In some adults infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) an HIV-1-specific T-cell response can be detected by demonstrating in vitro proliferation to HIV-1 proteins and peptides. In other HIV-1 infected adults an HIV-1-specific T-cell response can involve interleukin 2 (IL-2) secretion in the absence of T-cell proliferation. To elucidate the T-cell responses to PND in children, we examined the proliferative and the IL-2 secretory responses of peripheral blood lymphocytes from 19 HIV-1-infected children toward a peptide which contained a highly conserved sequence of the principal neutralizing domain of HIVMN (PND-MN). Stimulation with PND-MN induced proliferation of lymphocytes from 2 of the children and IL-2 secretion by lymphocytes from 5 of the children. In a 3-month-old infant, the in vitro cellular response to the PND-MN indicated HIV-1 infection prior to the detection p24 antigen in her serum. Although antibodies directed against PND-MN were detected in all but one of the children examined, the presence of high-affinity/avidity antibodies to the PND-MN correlated with the presence of a cellular response to PND-MN. Thus, in HIV-1-infected children an HIV-1 specific T-cell response in the absence of a proliferative response can be assessed by determination of the IL-2 secretory response and correlates with the generation of high-affinity/avidity antibodies.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases