Background: Nitric oxide (NO) production is increased among patients with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and also among those with tuberculosis (TB). In this study we sought to determine if there was increased NO production among patients with HIV/TB coinfection and the effect of four weeks chemotherapy on this level. Methods: 19 patients with HIV/TB coinfection were studied. They were treated with standard four drug antitubercular therapy and sampled at baseline and four weeks. 20 patients with HIV infection, but no opportunistic infections, were disease controls and 20 individuals were healthy controls. Nitrite and citrulline, surrogate markers for NO, were measured spectrophotometrically. Results: The mean age of HIV/TB patients was 28.4 ± 6.8 years and CD4 count was 116 ± 36.6/ mm. Mean nitrite level among HIV/TB coinfected was 207.6 ± 48.8 nmol/ml. This was significantly higher than 99.7 ±26.5 nmol/ml, the value for HIV infected without opportunistic infections and 46.4 ± 16.2 nmol/ml, the value for healthy controls (p value < 0.01). The level of HIV/TB coinfected NO in patients declined to 144.5 ± 34.4 nmol/ml at four weeks of therapy (p value < 0.05). Mean citrulline among HIV/TB coinfected was 1446.8 ± 468.8 nmol/ml. This was significantly higher than 880.8 ± 434.8 nmol/ml, the value for HIV infected without opportunistic infections and 486.6 ± 212.5 nmol/ml, the value for healthy controls (p value < 0.01). Levels of citrolline in HIV/TB infected declined to 1116.2 ± 388.6 nmol/ml at four weeks of therapy (p value < 0.05). Conclusions: NO production is elevated among patients with HIV infection, especially so among HIV/TB coinfected patients, but declines significantly following 4 weeks of antitubercular therapy.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases