Characterization of immune cells and infection by HIV in human ovarian tissues

Academic Article


  • Problem: New HIV infections in women are predominantly spread through sexual intercourse. Recent non-human primate studies demonstrated that simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) deposited in the vagina infected immune cells in the ovary. Whether immune cells in the human ovary are susceptible to HIV infection is unknown. Method of study: Immune cells were isolated from ovaries and characterized by flow cytometry. Cells were exposed to HIV for 2┬áhours. HIV infection was measured by flow cytometry and p24 secretion following 6 days in culture. Results: CD4+ T cells and CD14+ cells are present in the ovary and susceptible to infection by HIV-BaL. Among the CD45+ cells present, 30% were CD3+ T cells (with similar proportions of CD4+ or CD8+ T cells), and 7%-10% were CD14+ cells. Both CD4+ T cells and CD14+ cells were productively infected and supported replication. Conclusion: Immune cells in the ovary are potential targets for HIV infection.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Shen Z; Rodriguez-Garcia M; Ochsenbauer C; Wira CR
  • Volume

  • 78
  • Issue

  • 1