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A randomized controlled clinical trial on the impact of CCR5 blockade with maraviroc in early infection on T-cell dynamics

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Initiation of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in early HIV infection demonstrates clinical benefits including enhanced CD4 T-lymphocyte recovery and minimization of the latent HIV reservoir. Whether ART intensification with CCR5 blockade provides additional benefits is unknown.

Trial design

This randomized controlled trial evaluated the impact of maraviroc (MVC) intensification in persons starting ART in acute and early HIV (AEH, within 3 months of estimated date of infection).


Twenty persons in AEH in San Diego underwent double-blind randomization to receive either standard of care (SOC) ART or SOC + MVC to evaluate the hypothesis that early CCR5 blockage with a CCR5-containing ART regimen may provide immunologic and clinical benefit. The primary outcome of this study was the difference from baseline to week 48 in the proportion of CCR5 CD4 memory T cells. Blood was drawn at baseline and weeks 12, 24, and 48 to evaluate CCR5 CD4 and CD8 T-cell dynamics using multicolor flow cytometry.


MVC intensification (n = 10) did not significantly alter CCR5 T-cell dynamics at week 48 of study compared to SOC (n = 9) in this fully recruited study (mean 1.12 vs 0.63, t = 0.36, df = 16, P = 0.727). Exploratory analyses of additional T-cell subsets suggest that MVC intensification in AEH trended to early greater increases in naïve and activated and proliferating CD4 T cells (P = 0.11, 0.19), and greater decreases in senescent memory CD4 T cells (P = 0.06), but these differences did not remain by week 48. CD8 T-cell evaluations did demonstrate trends to differences at week 48 with slower increases in naïve cells and slower decreases in activated memory cells (P = 0.16, 0.09). There were no reported harms or significantly different adverse events.


We did observe a few trends, but did not find compelling evidence that MVC intensification during AEH significantly impacts CD4 and CD8 T-cell dynamics. Diagnosing and starting persons in AEH on ART may be of greater clinical importance than the regimen initiated.

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