This program project application is submitted by the members of the Cleveland Immunopathogenesis Consortium (CLIC) a group of investigators representing 10 academic and research institutions in the United States and Canada who have engaged for more than three years in a coordinated research effort aimed at unraveling the mechanisms whereby HIV infection results in progressive immune deficiency. This group of experienced, outstanding investigators capitalizes on complementary research skills and resources and proposes an interdisciplinary program comprising 4 projects that are coordinated and supported by two cores: Administrative Core, charged with overall coordination and administration of the program and Specimen Acquisition Core, Alan Landay, PI, charged with assuring a sustained supply of clinical specimens of gut and lymph nodes to support project investigators. The projects comprise a series of interacting research platforms from basic laboratory research to experimental animal models to translational projects, each designed to explore the determinants and mechanisms whereby immune activation drives CD4+ T cell depletion and dysfunction in chronic HIV infection. Project #1: Bystander activation drives T cell losses in chronic HIV infection - PIs: Michael M. Lederman, M.D., Scott F. Sieg Ph.D. - Case, will test the hypothesis that increased systemic levels of microbial TLR ligands and common gamma chain cytokines in secondary lymphoid tissues drive central memory T cell activation and turnover in chronic HIV infection. Project #2: Loss of intestinal barrier function in HIV infection - Alan Levine, Ph.D. Case, will examine the integrity of the intestinal mucosa in HIV infection to document the mechanistic details underlying the enhanced translocation of microbial products through the damaged gut that we propose contributes to the pathogenesis of cell loss in chronic HIV infection. Project #3: Immune activation and AIDS pathogenesis in SIV-infected non-human primates - Guido Silvestri, M.D., Univ of Pennsylvania, will attempt to induce disease in non-pathogenic SIV infection of sooty mangabeys by activation of the innate immune system and will test whether blocking innate immune activation will attenuate disease pathogenesis in infected rhesus macaques. Project #4: Immune activation promotes PD1 expression and immune dysfunction in chronic HIV infection - Rafick Pierre Sekaly Ph.D. - Univ of Montreal, will examine the role of innate immune system activation through the interaction between HIV RNAs and TLR7/8 on the expression of PDL-1 and 2 and their effects on the function and survival of HIV reactive T cells.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
Research Program Projects (P01)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZAI1-PRJ-A (J1))
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Embry, Alan C
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Case Western Reserve University
Internal Medicine/Medicine
Schools of Medicine
United States
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Olvera-GarcĂ­a, Gustavo; Espinosa, Enrique; Sieg, Scott F et al. (2014) Cytomegalovirus-specific responses of CD38? memory T cells are skewed towards IFN-? and dissociated from CD154 in HIV-1 infection. AIDS 28:311-6
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