Viruses. 2022 Nov 9;14(11):2472. doi: 10.3390/v14112472.
People living with HIV-1 and HTLV-2 concomitantly show slower CD4+ T cell depletion and AIDS progression, more frequency of the natural control of HIV-1, and lower mortality rates. A similar beneficial effect of this infection has been reported on HCV coinfection reducing transaminases, increasing the spontaneous clearance of HCV infection and delaying the development of hepatic fibrosis. Given the critical role of CD8+ T cells in controlling HIV-1 infection, we analysed the role of CD8+ T cell-mediated cytotoxic activity in coinfected individuals living with HIV-1. One hundred and twenty-eight individuals living with HIV-1 in four groups were studied: two groups with HTLV-2 infection, including individuals with HCV infection (N = 41) and with a sustained virological response (SVR) after HCV treatment (N = 25); and two groups without HTLV-2 infection, including individuals with HCV infection (N = 25) and with a sustained virological response after treatment (N = 37). We found that CD8+ T cell-mediated HIV-1 inhibition in vitro was higher in individuals with HTLV-2. This inhibition activity was associated with a higher frequency of effector memory CD8+ T cells, higher levels of granzyme A and granzyme B cytolytic enzymes, and perforin. Hence, cellular and soluble cytolytic factors may contribute to the lower HIV-1 pre-ART viral load and the HIV-1 proviral load during ART therapy associated with HTLV-2 infection. Herein, we confirmed and expanded previous findings on the role of HTLV-2 in the beneficial effect on the pathogenesis of HIV-1 in coinfected individuals.