Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and Simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) disease progression is associated with multifocal damage to the gastrointestinal tract epithelial barrier that correlates with microbial translocation and persistent pathological immune activation, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Investigating alterations in mucosal immunity during SIV infection, we found that damage to the colonic epithelial barrier was associated with loss of multiple lineages of interleukin (IL)-17-producing lymphocytes, cells that microarray analysis showed expressed genes important for enterocyte homeostasis, including IL-22. IL-22-producing lymphocytes were also lost after SIV infection. Potentially explaining coordinate loss of these distinct populations, we also observed loss of CD103 dendritic cells (DCs) after SIV infection, which associated with the loss of IL-17-and IL-22-producing lymphocytes. CD103 DCs expressed genes associated with promotion of IL-17/IL-22 cells, and coculture of CD103 DCs and naïve T cells led to increased IL17A and RORc expression in differentiating T cells. These results reveal complex interactions between mucosal immune cell subsets providing potential mechanistic insights into mechanisms of mucosal immune dysregulation during HIV/SIV infection, and offer hints for development of novel therapeutic strategies to address this aspect of AIDS virus pathogenesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy