Cellular localization of an HIV-1 antigen in subacute AIDS encephalitis using an improved double-labeling immunohistochemical method

Katsuhiro Kure, William D. Lyman, Karen M. Weidenheim, Dennis W Dickson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

181 Scopus citations

Abstract

Among 102 brains obtained from patients with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), 34 cases with subacute AIDS encephalitis were characterized by immunohistochemistry using an antibody that binds to a human immunodeficiency virus-1 (HIV-1) envelope glycoprotein, gp41. This glycoprotein was detected in mononucleated and/ or multinucleated cells in 90% of adult and 50% of pediatric brains with subacute AIDS encephalitis. In addition, many gp41-positive cells with bipolar or multipolar processes were found in 10 cases, and these cells occurred most frequently in the basal ganglia and internal capsule. The phenotype of the gp41-positive cells was determined using an improved double-labeling immunohistochemical technique that employed beta-galactosidase and peroxidase conjugated reagents. Cell-type specific markers for double-labeling included: Ricinus communis agglutinin-1 (JRCA-1) for macrophages and microglia; Ulex europaeus agglutinin-1 for endothelium; anti-glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP) for astrocytes; anti-amyloid precursor protein for neurons; and anti-leukocyte common antigen for leukocytes. Results of double-immunostaining revealed that gp41-positive cells of all morphologic types, including cells with bipolar or multipolar processes, were double-labeled with RCA-1, but not with markers for astrocytes, neurons, or endothelia. These findings support the contention that HIV-1 infection of the CNS is predominantly restricted to cells of the macrophage/microglia lineage.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1085-1092
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Volume136
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1990
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

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