Differences in expression of gut-homing receptors on CD4+ T cells in black and white HIV-negative men who have sex with men

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HIV incidence rates are higher among black men who have sex with men (BMSM) as compared with MSM of other race/ethnicities in the USA. We found that blood memory CD4+ cells from BMSM express higher levels of α4β7, the gut-homing integrin, compared with white MSM. Higher expression of α4β7 on blood CD4+ cells correlated with higher percentage of proliferating CD4+α4β7+ cells in rectal tissue suggesting increased trafficking of potential HIV target cells to rectal mucosa could increase HIV susceptibility among BMSM.

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