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Richard J. Miller

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date: 17 June 2019

HIV-1 related central and peripheral nervous system problems are highly prevalent but the details of their pathogenesis are poorly understood. A widely held hypothesis is that infected cells in the nervous system secrete neurotoxins that exert direct and indirect deleterious effects. Candidate neurotoxins include excitotoxins, inflammatory mediators, and HIV-1 viral proteins. There is evidence that chemokines and chemokine receptors, which are expressed in all major cell types in the brain, may play pivotal roles in many of these diverse neurotoxic processes. This chapter explores these possible roles. Close attention is paid to a several proposed mechanisms, including those involving the CXCR4 chemokine receptor and the HIV gp120 protein, whose effects may be partly mediated by cytokine-related processes. To help provide a framework for understanding these complex pathogenic phenomena, the roles of chemokines and chemokine receptors in normal development and function is discussed.

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