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Expression Level of Plasma Soluble Toll like Receptor 2 and 6 in the Mother to Child Transmission of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1

Background and context: Dysregulation of the immune system by the Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has an impact on innate immune components such as Toll-like receptors (TLRs).

Objective: We looked at the plasma concentration of soluble TLR2 and sTLR6 in mother-to-child transmission.

Methods: Two hundred and eighty three mothers with their newborn were recruited. Mothers were classified into five groups: transmitter with prevention (TWP), transmitter without prevention (TWDP), non-transmitter with prevention (NTWP), non-transmitter without prevention (NTWDP) and controls. Mothers’ blood samples were collected in EDTA tubes. Levels of sTLR2/6 were determined using sandwich enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays. HIV status of new-born was determined using PCR-DNA on dried blood spots.

Results: HIV infected mothers have a statistically higher level of sTLR2 than HIV non-infected mothers (p=0.001). The highest concentration was found in the NTWDP >TWP >NTWP >TWDP. There was a significant difference between all the medians comparing groups two by two. For sTLR6 there was neither a significant difference (p=0.156) between HIV infected and non-infected mothers, nor between groups. The median concentration was higher in NTWDP > NTWP > TWP > TWDP.

Conclusion: sTLR2 and sTLR6 plasma concentration may be associated to the prevention of mother-to-child transmission. But antiretroviral treatment could also dim down this protective effect.


Linda Chapdeleine Mouafo Mekue, Céline Nguefeu Nkenfou, Marie Nicole Ngoufack, Jules Roger Kuiaté, Jacques Henri Thèze, Vittorio Colizzi and Alexis Ndjolo

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