Increasing evidence suggests significant involvement of the basal ganglia in patients with HIV-1 infection.Objective
To study the effect of HIV-1 infection on cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) dopamine levels.Design
CSF dopamine levels were measured by high-performance liquid chromatography.Setting
A university-based outpatient clinic in south Florida involved in clinical AIDS research.Subjects
Twenty-two subjects were enrolled in a prospective, longitudinal study of the neurological complications of AIDS. Five subjects were HIV-seronegative, but at risk for HIV-1 infection, 11 were HIV-1-seropositive without neurological disease and six had HIV-1-related neurological disease.Results
The CSF dopamine mean values were significantly lower in the HIV-1-seropositive group with (P< 0.0001) or without (P < 0.0001) neurological disease than in the HIV-seronegative group. There was a very strong correlation between CD4 lymphocyte counts and CSF dopamine levels (P=0.004) in the neurologically symptomatic group (P= 0.0008), but not in the other two groups.Conclusion
HIV-1 infection appears to have an effect on the central nervous system dopaminergic systems, as reflected in levels of CSF dopamine.