Impaired extinction of cocaine seeking in HIV-infected mice is accompanied by peripheral and central immune dysregulation

Lauren A. Buck, Qiaowei Xie, Michelle Willis, Christine M. Side, Laura L. Giacometti, Peter J. Gaskill, Kyewon Park, Farida Shaheen, Lili Guo, Santhi Gorantla, Jacqueline M. Barker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Substance use disorders (SUDs) are highly comorbid with HIV infection, necessitating an understanding of the interactive effects of drug exposure and HIV. The relationship between HIV infection and cocaine use disorder is likely bidirectional, with cocaine use directly impacting immune function while HIV infection alters addiction-related behavior. To better characterize the neurobehavioral and immune consequences of HIV infection and cocaine exposure, this study utilizes a humanized mouse model to investigate the outcomes of HIV-1 infection on cocaine-related behaviors in a conditioned place preference (CPP) model, and the interactive effects of cocaine and HIV infection on peripheral and central nervous system inflammation. HIV infection selectively impairs cocaine CPP extinction without effecting reinstatement or cocaine seeking under conflict. Behavioral alterations are accompanied by immune changes in HIV infected mice, including increased prefrontal cortex astrocyte immunoreactivity and brain-region specific effects on microglia number and reactivity. Peripheral immune system changes are observed in human cytokines, including HIV-induced reductions in human TNFα, and cocaine and HIV interactions on GM-CSF levels. Together these data provide new insights into the unique neurobehavioral outcomes of HIV infection and cocaine exposure and how they interact to effect immune responses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number387
JournalCommunications biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2024

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences


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