Evidence gaps on weight gain in people living with HIV: A scoping review to define a research agenda


BACKGROUND: Combined antiretroviral therapy (cART) dramatically improved survival in people living with HIV (PLWH) but is associated with weight gain (WG), raising concern for a possible obesity epidemic in PLWH. This scoping review aims to identify the gaps in the existing evidence on WG in PLWH and generate a future research agenda. METHODS: This review was conducted according to the methodology for scoping studies and reported according to the PRISMA Extension for Scoping Review checklist. Articles published in English in the last 10 years indexed in Pubmed, WHO Global Index Medicus, or Embase were searched using specific queries focused on WG in PLWH. RESULTS: Following the selection process, 175 included articles were reviewed to search for the available evidence on four specific topics: (I) definition of WG in PLWH, (II) pathogenesis of WG in PLWH, (III) impact of ART on WG, (IV) correlation of WG with clinical outcomes. A summary of the data enabled us to identify gaps and clearly define the following research agenda: (I) develop a data-driven definition of WG in PLWH and define noninvasive assessment methods for body weight and fat composition; (II) further investigate the interaction between HIV/cART and immunity, metabolism, and adipose tissue; (III) establish the specific role of individual drugs on WG; (IV) clarify the independent role of WG, cART, HIV, and metabolic factors on clinical events. CONCLUSIONS: The proposed research agenda may help define future research and fill the knowledge gaps that have emerged from this review.


Guaraldi G, Bonfanti P, di Biagio A, Gori A, Milić J, Saltini P, Segala FV, Squillace N, Taramasso L, Cingolani A




  • Population(s)
    • General HIV+ population
  • Prevention, Engagement and Care Cascade
    • Engagement and Care Cascade
  • Engagement and Care Cascade
    • Treatment


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