Combined cART including Tenofovir Disoproxil, Emtricitabine, and Dolutegravir has potent therapeutic effects in HIV-1 infected humanized mice

Abstract HIV-1 reservoirs persist in the presence of combined antiretroviral therapy (cART). However, cART has transformed HIV-1 infection into a chronic disease marked by control of HIV-1 viral load and mortality reduction. Major challenges remain, including viral resistance upon termination of cART and persistence and identification of tissue distribution of HIV-1 reservoirs. Thus, appropriate animal models that best mimic HIV-1 pathogenesis are important, and the current study complements our previously published validation of the CD34+ hematopoietic humanized mouse model for this purpose. Here we analyze viral suppression using the recently developed combination of antiretrovirals that include Tenofovir Disoproxil (TDF), Emtricitabine (FTC), and Dolutegravir (DTG), a choice based on recent clinical outcomes showing its improved antiretroviral potency, CD4+ T cell preservation, tolerability, and prevention of viral drug resistance compared to that of previous regimens. We used quantitative Airyscan-based super resolution confocal microscopy of selected mouse tissues. Our data allowed us to identify specific solid tissue reservoirs of human T cells expressing the HIV-1 core protein p24. In particular, lymph node, brain, spleen, and liver were visualized as reservoirs for residual infected cells. Marked reduction of viral replication was evident. Considering that detection and visualization of cryptic sites of HIV-1 infection in tissues are clearly crucial steps towards HIV-1 eradication, appropriate animal models with pseudo-human immune systems are needed. In fact, current studies with humans and non-human primates have limited sample availability at multiple stages of infection and cannot easily analyze the effects of differently administered combined antiretroviral treatments on multiple tissues. That is easier to manage when working with humanized mouse models, although we realize the limitations due to low human cell recovery and thus the number of cells available for thorough and comprehensive analyses. Nonetheless, our data further confirm that the CD34+ humanized mouse model is a potentially useful pre-clinical model to study and improve current anti-HIV-1 therapies..

Media Type:

Electronic Article

Year of Publication:




Contained In:

To Main Record - volume:19

Contained In:

Journal of translational medicine - 19(2021), 1 vom: 30. Okt.




Weichseldorfer, Matthew [Author]
Affram, Yvonne [Author]
Heredia, Alonso [Author]
Rikhtegaran-Tehrani, Zahra [Author]
Sajadi, Mohammad M. [Author]
Williams, Sumiko P. [Author]
Tagaya, Yutaka [Author]
Benedetti, Francesca [Author]
Ramadhani, Habib O. [Author]
Denaro, Frank [Author]
Munawwar, Arshi [Author]
Bryant, Joseph [Author]
Zella, Davide [Author]
Reitz, Marvin [Author]
Romerio, Fabio [Author]
Latinovic, Olga S. [Author]


Volltext [kostenfrei]


Antiretroviral therapies
HIV/AIDS pathogenesis
Hu-mouse models


© The Author(s) 2021




Supporting institution / Project title:

PPN (Catalogue-ID):