Novel advances on tissue immune dynamics in HIV/simian immunodeficiency virus: lessons from imaging studies

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Purpose of review

To describe recent findings on the effect of HIV/SIV infection on lymph node viral and T-cell dynamics using imaging-based methodologies.

Recent findings

Chronic infection, particularly HIV/SIV, alters dramatically the microenvironment, immune cell frequency, distribution, function and tissue organization of secondary lymphoid tissues. These changes are not always reversible. Over the past few years, the implementation of advanced imaging protocols on human lymph node biopsies as well as on longitudinal lymphoid tissues samples from nonhuman primates (NHP) have provided a wealth of information on how local immune responses evolve over time in response to a persisting retroviral pathogen. Most of the information concerns cytotoxic and helper T cells and viral dynamics. In this review, we detail this information focusing on HIV/SIV infection. We also comment on the gaps that imaging technologies have bridged in our understanding and discuss the translational value of these new findings in the light of emerging therapeutic agendas.


Novel imaging platforms allow for dissecting the spatiotemporal dynamics of immune interactions further improving our understanding of the interplay between virus and host and providing important information for designing successful preventive and curative strategies.

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