Serum extracellular vesicles expressing bone activity markers associate with bone loss after HIV antiretroviral therapy

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Objective:We tested whether bone-related extracellular vesicle phenotypes changed after initiating antiretroviral therapy (ART) and determined whether changes in levels of extracellular vesicles correlated with changes in bone mineral density (BMD).Design:Extracellular vesicle phenotypes were measured in blinded serum samples from 15 adults with HIV at baseline, 1, 3, 6 and 12 months after ART initiation. Not all samples were available at each time point so we averaged early (TP1, 1–3 months) and late (TP2, 6–12 months) time points.Methods:Extracellular vesicles were stained for osteocalcin (OC), RANKL (CD254), RANK (CD265), M-CSF (macrophage colony stimulating factor), and CD34+. Serum OC, procollagen type I N-terminal propeptide (P1NP), and C-terminal telopeptide of type 1 collagen (CTx) were also measured.Results:BMD significantly decreased from baseline to 12 months. Levels of OC+EVs, serum OC, serum P1NP, and CTx were significantly higher at early and late time points compared with baseline. Increases in EVs expressing OC, RANKL, RANK, and CD34+ from baseline to TP1 were associated with decreases in total hip BMD from baseline to 12 months. Change in serum OC, P1NP, and CTx from baseline to TP1 or TP2 did not correlate with change in BMD.Conclusion:Early changes in extracellular vesicles as expressing markers of bone activity were associated with total hip bone loss 12 months after ART initiation. These data suggest that serum extracellular vesicles may serve as novel biomarkers of bone remodeling. Future studies are required to determine if extracellular vesicles contribute to the effects of ART on changes in bone turnover markers and BMD.

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