Microbial translocation, immune activation, and HIV disease

Nichole R. Klatt, Nicholas T. Funderburg, Jason M. Brenchley

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

229 Scopus citations


The advent of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) has significantly improved the prognosis of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected individuals. However, individuals treated long-term with cART still manifest increased mortality compared to HIV-uninfected individuals. This increased mortality is closely associated with inflammation, which persists in cART-treated HIV-infected individuals despite levels of plasma viremia below detection limits. Chronic, pathological immune activation is a key factor in progression to acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in untreated HIV-infected individuals. One contributor to immune activation is microbial translocation, which occurs when microbial products traverse the tight epithelial barrier of the gastrointestinal tract. Here we review the mechanisms underlying microbial translocation and its role in contributing to immune activation and disease progression in HIV infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6-13
Number of pages8
JournalTrends in Microbiology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • HIV
  • Immune activation
  • Microbial translocation
  • Mucosal immunity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Virology


Dive into the research topics of 'Microbial translocation, immune activation, and HIV disease'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this