Background:Untreated HIV may increase the risk of cardiovascular events. Our preliminary in vitro and in vivo research suggests that pentoxifylline (PTX) reduces vascular inflammation and improves endothelial function in HIV-infected persons not requiring antiretroviral therapy.Methods:We performed a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of PTX 400 mg orally thrice daily for 8 weeks in 26 participants. The primary endpoint was change in flow-mediated dilation (FMD) of the brachial artery after 8 weeks. Nitroglycerin-mediated dilation (NTGMD) and circulating markers of inflammation, cellular immune activation, coagulation, and metabolism were also assessed.Results:The difference in mean absolute change (SD) in FMD after 8 weeks between the placebo [-1.06 (1.45)%] and PTX [-1.93 (3.03)%] groups was not significant (P = 0.44). No differences in NTGMD were observed. The only significant between-group difference in the changes in biomarkers from baseline to week 8 was in soluble tumor necrosis factor receptor-1 (sTNFRI) [-83.2 pg/mL in the placebo group vs. +65.9 pg/mL in the PTX group; P = 0.03]. PTX was generally well-tolerated.Conclusions:PTX did not improve endothelial function and unexpectedly increased the inflammatory biomarker sTNFRI in HIV-infected participants not requiring antiretroviral therapy. Additional interventional research is needed to reduce inflammation and cardiovascular risk in this population.Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT00796822.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)