Cocaine abuse has been associated with vasculitis and stroke, and is suspected to influence the progression of AIDS dementia. Cocaine may enhance HIV-1 neuroinvasion by actions directed at the blood-brain barrier. HIV-1 appears to penetrate the human brain microvascular endothelial cell barrier by a paracellular route breached by tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α). Cocaine's effects on the blood-brain barrier were investigated using human brain microvascular endothelial cells and peripheral blood monocytes. Cocaine (10-5 M and 10-6 M) increased molecular permeability of the barrier and viral invasion by the macrophage-tropic HIV-1(JR-FL) into the brain chamber. Cocaine also augmented apoptosis of brain endothelial cells and monocytes, increased secretion of four chemokines (interleukin-8, interferon-inducible protein-10, macrophage inflammatory protein-1α, and monocyte chemoattractant protein-1) and the cytokine, TNF-α, by human monocytes. TNF-α enhanced invasion of the brain compartment by macrophage-tropic, lymphotropic, and bitropic HIV-1 strains. These data indicate that HIV-1 neuroinvasion can be increased by (a) cocaine's direct effects on brain microvascular endothelial cells and (b) paracrine effects of cocaine-induced pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines on the blood-brain barrier.
- Endothelial cells
- Macrophage inflammatory protein-1α
- Monocyte chemoattractant protein-1
- Tumor necrosis factor-α
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology
- Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience