Date of Award

12-2018

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Program

Biomedical Sciences

Track

Microbiology, Immunology, and Biochemistry

Research Advisor

Santosh Kumar Ph.D.

Committee

Theodore Cory, Ph.D. P. David Rogers, Ph.D.

Abstract

Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, despite great advances in antiretroviral therapy (ART), remains a lifelong affliction. Though current treatment regimens can effectively suppress viral load to undetectable levels and preserve healthy immune function, they cannot fully alleviate all symptoms caused by the presence of the virus, such as HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND). Exosomes are small vesicles that transport cellular proteins, RNA, and small molecules between cells as a mechanism of intercellular communication. Recent research has shown that HIV proteins and RNA can be packaged into exosomes and transported between cells, to pathogenic effect. This review summarizes the current knowledge on the diverse mechanisms involved in the sorting of viral elements into exosomes and the damage those exosomal agents can inflict. In addition, potential therapeutic options to counteract exosomemediated HIV pathogenesis are reviewed and considered.

ORCID

http://orcid.org/0000-0003-2130-265X

DOI

10.21007/etd.cghs.2018.0464

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