Date of Award

2015

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Microbiology and Immunology

Abstract

A major barrier to HIV eradication is the persistence of latent viral reservoirs that exist despite antiretroviral therapy. In order to develop effective therapeutics, a comprehensive understanding of latency and factors driving the formation of the latent reservoir is needed. As stress and alcohol are common comorbidities associated with HIV infection, the goal of this research was to determine how stress and alcohol could affect HIV-latency. Specifically, we hypothesized that the ability of latent proviruses to be reactivated by “shock and kill” approaches would be altered by glucocorticoid and ethanol treatments, and prolonged ethanol exposure would affect the size of the latent reservoir. To test our hypothesis, we examined two aspects of latency. First, we assessed whether viral reactivation was altered by dexamethasone and ethanol treatments. We then addressed how dexamethasone and ethanol exposure could affect the establishment of latent reservoirs.

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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

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