The HIV-human metabolic relationship is a complex interaction convoluted even more by antiretroviral therapy (cART) and comorbidities. The ability of cART to undo the HIV induced metabolic dysregulation is unclear and under-investigated. Using targeted metabolomics and multiplex immune biomarker analysis, we characterized plasma samples obtained from 18 untreated HIV-1-infected adult patients and compared these to a non-HIV infected (n = 23) control population. The biogenic amine perturbations during an untreated HIV infection implicated altered tryptophan- nitrogen- and muscle metabolism. Furthermore, the lipid profiles of untreated patients were also significantly altered compared to controls. In untreated HIV infection, the sphingomyelins and phospholipids correlated negatively to markers of infection IP-10 and sIL-2R whereas a strong association was found between triglycerides and MCP-1. In a second cohort, we characterized plasma samples obtained from 28 HIV-1-infected adult patients before and 12 months after the start of cART, to investigate the immune-metabolic changes associated with cART. The identified altered immune-metabolic pathways of an untreated HIV infection showed minimal change after 12 months of cART. In conclusion, 12 months of cART impacts only mildly on the metabolic dysregulation underlying an untreated HIV infection and provide insights into the comorbidities present in virally suppressed HIV patients.

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Journal Scientific Reports
Peltenburg, N.C, Schoeman, J.C. (Johannes C.), Hou, J, Mora, F. (Fernando), Harms, A.C, Lowe, S, … Boonstra, P.A. (2018). Persistent metabolic changes in HIV-infected patients during the first year of combination antiretroviral therapy. Scientific Reports, 8(1). doi:10.1038/s41598-018-35271-0