4 Luhansk State Medical University and Regional AIDS Center, Luhansk 91045, Ukraine
Open-label, matched-case, comparative trial was conducted in 40 HIV-infected patients to evaluate the adjunct effect of Dzherelo (Immunoxel) on immune and viral parameters. Arm A (n=20) received anti-retroviral therapy (ART) consisting of zidovudine, lamivudine, and efavirenz and arm B (n=20) received ART with Dzherelo. After 2 months total T-lymphocytes increased in ART recipients from 664 to 819 cells/μl (P=0.06), whereas in Dzherelo recipients they rose from 595 to 785(P=0.03). The CD4 T-cells expanded by 57.3% (218 to 343; P=0.002) in the ART arm and by 93.5% (184 to 356; P=0.004) in the Dzherelo arm. The accrual in absolute and relative number of CD8+ lymphocytes in ART and in the Dzherelo recipients was 43.2% (2.7%) and 50.4% (-0.5%) respectively. The CD4/CD8 ratio in Dzherelo recipients increased from 1.495 to 1.940 (P=0.03) but insignificant in the control: 1.418 to 1.613 (P=0.14). Activated CD3+ HLADR+ T-cells increased from 209 to 264 (P=0.02) and from 161 to 348 (P=0.0007) in ART and Dzherelo recipients respectively. No changes in CD20+ B-lymphocytes were seen in the control, but in Dzherelo patients they declined from 509 to 333 (P=0.00008). The proportion of CD3- CD16+CD56+ NK cells was not affected by ART but addition of Dzherelo raised NK cells from 11.2% to 17.1% (P=0.0001). About three-quarters (14/19) of patients on ART displayed decrease in viral load (1718 to 1419 copies/ml; P=0.008), while 95% of patients on Dzherelo had a decrease (1793 to 1368; P=0.001). Dzherelo has a favorable effect on the immune status and viral burden when given as an immunomodulating adjunct to ART.
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