The exact cause of HIV-associated wasting is not clearly understood. But research
suggests that hormones and other changes may play a role. Here’s
Hormones regulate bodily functions like growth and development, , and reproduction. Testosterone is a type of hormone that helps
produce bone and muscle growth. When testosterone levels become too low, significant
loss of may occur.1
Changes in Metabolism
When you are eating right and exercising regularly, your body converts the
food you eat into energy. The conversion is called . With regular ,
the body also draws energy from stored fat in addition to carbohydrates.
In many people diagnosed with HIV-associated wasting, their bodies may draw energy
from which may cause a reduction
in physical endurance. When you lose ,
you lose muscle, organs, blood cells and water, which are all essential to energy
production and physical endurance.2-6
Inflammation is a natural body response to things like infection or cell injury
that helps control tissue damage. If the body produces too much inflammation, it
can change , break down muscle, and
can suppress appetite.7,8
Growth Hormone Resistance
Growth hormone inside your body helps promote tissue growth, including .
Growth hormone can also help the body properly regulate the use of body fat as a source of energy. The loss of ,
including muscle, can occur when the body has problems
utilizing the growth hormone that it naturally produces.1
- Dudgeon WD, Phillips KD, Carson JA, et al. Counteracting muscle wasting in HIV-infected
individuals. HIV Med. 2006;7:299-310.
- Serostim® [somatropin (rDNA origin) for injection] Prescribing
Information. Rockland, MA: EMD Serono, Inc. 2012.
- Castaneda C. Muscle wasting and protein metabolism. J Anim Sci. 2002;80(suppl):E98-E105.
- Roubenoff R, Grinspoon S, Skolnik PR, et al. Role of cytokines and testosterone
in regulating lean body mass and resting energy expenditure in HIV-infected men.
Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2002;283:E138-E145.
- Lutz NW, Yahi N, Fantini J, et al. Perturbations of glucose metabolism associated
with HIV infection in human intestinal epithelial cells: a multinuclear magnetic
resonance spectroscopy study. AIDS. 1997;11:147-155.
- Frost RA, Lang CH, Gelato MC. Transient exposure of human myoblasts to tumor necrosis
factor-α inhibits serum and insulin-like growth factor-I stimulated protein
synthesis. Endocrinology. 1997;138:4153-4159.
- Kotler DP. Cachexia. Ann Intern Med. 2000;133:622-634.
- Gelato M, McNurlan M, Freeland E. Role of recombinant human growth hormone in
HIV-associated wasting and cachexia: pathophysiology and rationale for treatment.
Clin Ther. 2007;29:2269-2288.