Tryptophan degradation is associated with risk-taking propensity in methamphetamine users with treated HIV infection.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Few studies have examined neuroimmune pathways that could contribute to impulsivity in people living with HIV who use substances. Eighty-four methamphetamine-using, sexual minority men with an undetectable HIV viral load were administered the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), a behavioral measure of risk-taking propensity. We examined the associations between kynurenine/tryptophan ratio and phenylalanine/tyrosine ratio with BART scores using multiple linear regression. A higher kynurenine/tryptophan ratio was independently associated with greater BART scores (beta = 0.25; 95% CI = 0.05-1.23; p = 0.034). The phenylalanine/tyrosine ratio was not significantly associated with BART scores. Findings support the need for further research to elucidate the neuroimmune mechanisms linking tryptophan degradation with impulsivity to catalyze the development novel pharmacologic treatments for people living with HIV who use methamphetamine.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Lee, J; Lee, J-Y; Meade, CS; Cohn, M; Chahine, A; Dilworth, SE; Magidson, JF; Gouse, H; Fuchs, D; Carrico, AW

Published Date

  • October 2020

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 26 / 5

Start / End Page

  • 779 - 784

PubMed ID

  • 32728896

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC7541781

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1538-2443

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s13365-020-00841-4


  • eng

Conference Location

  • United States