Ga(III) nanoparticles inhibit growth of both Mycobacterium tuberculosis and HIV and release of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and IL-8 in coinfected macrophages

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Treatment of individuals coinfected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) type 1 and Mycobacterium tuberculosis is challenging due to the prolonged treatment requirements, drug toxicity, and emergence of drug resistance. Mononuclear phagocytes (MP; macrophages) are one of the natural reservoirs for both HIV and M. tuberculosis. Here, the treatment of HIV and M. tuberculosis coinfection was studied by preloading human macrophages with MP-targeted gallium (Ga) nanoparticles to limit subsequent simultaneous infection with both HIV and M. tuberculosis. Ga nanoparticles provided sustained drug release for 15 days and significantly inhibited the replication of both HIV and M. tuberculosis. Addition of Ga nanoparticles to MP already infected with M. tuberculosis or HIV resulted in a significant decrease in the magnitude of these infections, but the magnitude was less than that achieved with nanoparticle preloading of the MP. In addition, macrophages that were coinfected with HIV and M. tuberculosis and that were loaded with Ga nanoparticles reduced the levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and IL-8 secretion for up to 15 days after drug loading. Ga nanoparticles also reduced the levels of IL-6 and IL-8 secretion by ionomycin- and lipopolysaccharide-induced macrophages, likely by modulating the IκB kinase-β/NF-κB pathway. Delivery of Ga nanoparticles to macrophages is a potent long-acting approach for suppressing HIV and M. tuberculosis coinfection of macrophages in vitro and sets the stage for the development of new approaches to the treatment of these important infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere02505-16
JournalAntimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2017



  • Human immunodeficiency virus
  • IL-6
  • IL-8
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis
  • Nanoparticle

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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