HIV-1 IgA specific serum antibodies and disease progression during HIV-1 infection

miriam Margalith*, Ester Levy, Charles R. Rinaldo, Roger Detels, John Phair, Richard Kaslow, Alfred J. Saah, Batia Sarov

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the role of serum human immunodeficiency virus type 1 immunoglobulin A (HIV-1 IgA) antibodies in the progression of HIV-1 infection in relation to viral load and CD4 cell counts. Methods: Sequential serum specimens were obtained from 218 homosexual men: 123 HIV-1 seropositives, 24 HIV-1 seroconverters, and 71 HIV-1 seronegatives. HIV-1 IgA antibodies were tested blindly by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and Western blot. T-lymphocyte subsets were measured by flow cytometry. Viral plasma load was determined by a sensitive branched DNA assay. Results: HIV-1 IgA antibodies with a titer greater than or equal to 50 were detected among 50% of the seroconverters, 27% of the HIV-1-seropositive asymptomatic subjects, 25% of lymphadenopathy, and 23% of HIV-1-related symptomatic subjects. Among patients with the acquired immune deficiency syndrome, the prevalence of virus-specific IgA antibodies (55%) was significantly higher (p < 0.03) as compared with the HIV-1-seropositive asymptomatic subjects, lymphadenopathy and HIV-1-related symptomatic patients, but not versus the seroconverters (p = 0.8). IgA antibodies to HIV-1 gP160 were the most prevalent among all subjects tested. A significant decrease in CD4 cell counts was observed after HIV-1 seroconversion. Viral load was slightly higher among the seroconverters who demonstrated higher (≥50) HIV-1 IgA levels. Conclusions: HIV-1 IgA serum antibodies did not predict the progression of the disease. Correlation between HIV-1 IgA antibodies titer, viral load, and CD4 cell counts was not detected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)269-277
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Human Virology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2001


  • CD4 cells
  • HIV-1 IgA serum antibodies
  • Viral load

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology


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