Effect of morphine and SIV on dendritic cell trafficking into the central nervous system of rhesus macaques

Rebecca Hollenbach, Divya Sagar, Zafar K. Khan, Shannon Callen, Honghong Yao, Jasmine Shirazi, Shilpa Buch, Pooja Jain

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Recruitment of immune cells such as monocytes/macrophages and dendritic cells (DCs) across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) has been documented in diseases involving neuroinflammation. Neuroinvasion by HIV leads to neurocognitive diseases and alters the permeability of the BBB. Likewise, many HIV patients use drugs of abuse such as morphine, which can further compromise the BBB. While the role of monocytes and macrophages in neuroAIDS is well established, research demonstrating the presence and role of DCs in the CNS during HIV infection has not been developed yet. In this respect, this study explored the presence of DCs in the brain parenchyma of rhesus macaques infected with a neurovirulent form of SIV (SIV mac239 R71/17E) and administered with morphine. Cells positive for DC markers including CD11c (integrin), macDC-SIGN (dendritic cell-specific ICAM-3 grabbing nonintegrin), CD83 (a maturation factor), and HLA-DR (MHC class II) were consistently found in the brain parenchyma of SIV-infected macaques as well as infected macaques on morphine. Control animals did not exhibit any DC presence in their brains these results provide first evidence of DCs' relevance in NeuroAIDS vis-à-vis drugs of abuse and open new avenues of understanding and investigative HIV-CNS inflictions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)175-183
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of neurovirology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • Blood-brain barrier
  • Central nervous system
  • Dendritic cell trafficking
  • Drugs of abuse
  • Fluorescent immunohistochemistry
  • SIV infection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Virology


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