Evaluation of inflammatory biomarkers, carotid intima-media thickness and cardiovascular risk in HIV-1 treatment-naive patients

Abstract INTRODUCTION Mortality among HIV patients is 3-15 times higher than that among the general population. Currently, most deaths are due to non-infectious diseases. Chronic inflammation and adverse events due to antiretroviral therapy play crucial roles in increasing cardiovascular risk (CVR). METHODS: This cross-sectional study aimed to evaluate carotid intima-media thickness (CIMT) and inflammatory biomarkers (D-dimer, ADAMTS13, GDF-15, sICAM-1, MPO, myoglobin, NGAL, SAA, sVCAM-1, and p-selectin) among naïve patients. RESULTS: Sixty-seven participants were included: median age, 32 years; males, 82.1%; non-white, 61.1%; higher education level, 62.7%; and exposed to HIV through sexual relationship (men who have sex with men), 68.7%. The median viral load and LTCD4+ value were 42,033 copies/mL and 426 cells/mm³. The prevalence of arterial hypertension was 16.4%; those of diabetes mellitus and dyslipidemia were 3% and 70.1%, respectively. The CIMT was 494.08 (± 96.84mm). The mean vascular age was 33.2 ± 18.9 years, one year longer than the chronological age, without statistical significance. CONCLUSIONS The majority of participants had a low CVR (94%). After reclassification, considering the CIMT percentiles, 13 (19.4%) patients had medium/ high CVR, while 54 (80.6%) patients had low CVR. The difference between the proportions of CVR when considering the CIMT and its corresponding percentile was statistically relevant. Body mass index was the only predictor of higher CVR (p = 0.03). No biomarker was found to predict CVR. People living with HIV have a high prevalence of dyslipidemia before ARV therapy.