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Antiretroviral therapy impacts pulmonary innate immunity cells

Respiratory research group in Canada: the Meakins-Christie Laboratories

RI-MUHC team detects impact of HIV antiretroviral therapy on the anti-tuberculosis immune response 

A study led by Erwin Schurr, PhD, in collaboration with Jean-Pierre Routy, MD, (IDIGH Program, RI-MUHC) and Ronald Olivenstein, MD, (RESP Program, RI-MUHC) was published in JCI. The research team investigated the impact of HIV and antiretroviral therapy on the transcriptomic and epigenetic response of alveolar macrophages to Mycobacterium tuberculosis (Mtb), the causative agent of tuberculosis (TB). They found that alveolar macrophages, which are cells important for protection from tuberculosis infection, were adversely impacted by antiretroviral therapy.

These findings are important since prophylactic antiretroviral therapy is being rolled out globally. These results raise a warning sign that it may unexpectedly increase risk of pulmonary diseases more commonly associated with HIV and antiretroviral therapy.

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