Project

The Effects of Age and Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy on Brain Function

The Effects of Age and Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy on Brain Function

Principal Investigator: Paul, Robert
Funder: National Institute of Nursing
Official Title: The Effects of Age and Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy on Brain Function

HIV infected patients are now living longer due to HAART. Currently, more than 50% of all HIV infected patients are >50 years old. However, HAART has not decreased the prevalence of neurological disorders in HIV infected patients. Older HIV infected patients are at greater risk for developing neurological disorders. Debate exists concerning the overall efficacy of HAART as better brain penetrating regimens (neuroHAART) may control the virus in the brain but cause neurotoxicity. Current assessment of neurocognitive disorders due to HIV entails lengthy neuropsychological testing which may not be sensitive to early signs of neuronal dysfunction. It is imperative that an early presymptomatic biomarker is identified to test interventions that prevent HIV infected patients from developing neurocognitive impairment. The project will: 1) measure the effects of HIV on brain functional connections, 2) investigate if HIV accelerates aging of brain networks, and 3) evaluate the effects of neuroHAART on brain connections.

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