Clinically Indicated Corticosteroids Do Not Affect Bone Turnover During Immune Restoration of Severely Lymphopenic HIV-Infected Patients

Philip M. Grant, Virginia Sheikh, Rebecca DerSimonian, Adam Rupert, Gregg Roby, Alice Pau, Michael C. Sneller, Sheryl Vi Rico, Todd T. Brown, Irini Sereti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


UNLABELLED: Lymphopenia, corticosteroids, antiretroviral therapy (ART), and inflammation negatively impact bone turnover and decrease bone mineral density, but their combined effect has not been evaluated. We examined the association between corticosteroids on bone turnover markers in severely lymphopenic HIV-infected patients initiating ART. Levels of osteocalcin (bone formation marker) and C-terminal telopeptide (CTX; bone resorption marker) were measured at baseline, weeks 4, 12, and 48 of ART in individuals with severe lymphopenia and opportunistic infection (OI) who received (n=28) or did not receive corticosteroids (n=30) during the first year of ART, and in a control group with CD4 >200 (n=15). Wilcoxon tests were used to compare median values of variables between groups. Correlations between plasma interleukin (IL)-6 and tumor necrosis factor (TNF) levels with bone turnover marker levels were performed using Spearman's coefficient. Individuals given corticosteroids received a median of 21 days at a 35 mg prednisone-equivalent daily dose. Individuals with severe lymphopenia had lower osteocalcin levels at baseline and week 4 and higher CTX levels at ART initiation vs.

CONTROLS: Bone turnover markers did not differ in severely lymphopenic persons according to corticosteroid receipt. In those with severe lymphopenia, higher IL-6 was associated with higher CTX levels at ART initiation only. HIV-infected patients with severe lymphopenia and OI had lower levels of bone formation and higher levels of bone resorption than those initiating ART at higher CD4. Corticosteroid use, as prescribed during OI, was not associated with bone turnover. In contrast, higher markers of systemic inflammation prior to ART were associated with greater bone resorption.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)739-744
Number of pages6
JournalAIDS research and human retroviruses
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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