Immune changes in male homosexuals - Predisposing factors for HIV seroconversion

Z. Bentwich, R. Burstein, Y. Berner, T. Gotlieb-Stematsky, A. Vonsover, Z. Handzel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Israel is still a low incidence country for AIDS and thus the temporal relationships between various cofactors and HIV infection can be more easily determined. We have studied a cohort of 243 asymptomatic male homosexuals (MHS) during the last 4 years. At the beginning of the study, 40% had significant decreases in the peripheral blood lymphoid populations, signs for reactivation of CMV and EBV infections, and elevated serum levels of interferon. There was no difference in the prevalence of these immune derangements between seropositive and seronegative individuals. In the course of 4 years' follow-up, the prevalence of these immune derangements has remained the same though being significantly more severe in the HIV seropositive subjects. HIV seroconversion did not exceed 8% (about 2% annually) and was related to the immune impairments found when first seen at the beginning of the study. The results suggest that immune impairments are common among asymptomatic MHS, precede HIV infection, and probably contribute to the increased risk for AIDS among male homosexuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241s-247s
Issue number12 SUPPL.
StatePublished - 1 Dec 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology
  • Oncology
  • Cancer Research


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