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Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Volume 2009 (2009), Article ID 236919, 6 pages
Research Article

Detection of Fastidious Vaginal Bacteria in Women with HIV Infection and Bacterial Vaginosis

1Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, University of Washington, P.O. Box 356460, Seattle, WA 98195, USA
2Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Brown University, Providence, RI 02912, USA
3Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA 98109, USA
4Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA
5Emory Center for AIDS Research, Emory University, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA

Received 6 January 2009; Accepted 6 October 2009

Academic Editor: Harold Wiesenfeld

Copyright © 2009 Caroline Mitchell et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Background. Fastidious bacteria have been associated with bacterial vaginosis (BV) using PCR methods. We assessed the prevalence of these bacteria in HIV-1 infected women and their relationship with vaginal pH and shedding of HIV-1 RNA. Methods. 64 cervicovaginal lavage (CVL) samples were collected from 51 women. Vaginal microbiota were characterized using 8 bacterium-specific quantitative PCR assays. Results. Women with the fastidious bacteria Bacterial Vaginosis Associated Bacterium (BVAB) 1, 2, and 3 showed a trend to increased HIV-1 shedding (OR 2.59–3.07, –.17). Absence of Lactobacillus crispatus ( ) and presence of BVAB2 ( ) were associated with elevated vaginal pH. BVAB1, 2, and 3 were highly specific indicators of BV in HIV-infected women, with specificities of 89%–93%. Conclusions. Fastidious bacteria (BVAB 1, 2, and 3) remain specific indicators of BV in HIV-infected women, and BVAB2 may contribute to the elevated vaginal pH that is a hallmark of this syndrome.