CD4 as the Receptor for Retroviruses of the HTLV Family: Immunopathogenetic Implications

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CD4 is the HIV (Human immunodeficiency virus type I) receptor, and the virus seems to bind to it through the Leu3a/0KT4a epitope (Klatzmann et al., 1985), HIV infection may lead to the destruction of CD4+ cells both by direct and indirect mechanisms. Direct mechanisms include the formation of syncitia among infected cells (Lifson et al., 1936). Indirect mechanisms may involve autoimmune reactions, of both cell mediated and humoral types (Klatzmann and Montagnier, 1986).