In vitro studies indicate UV radiation activates HIV gene expression. To repair DNA damage caused by UV, cells turn on genes, including HIV genes; however, the overall effect of increased viral load in skin may be insignificant. UV may produce adverse effects by inhibiting TH1 protective immune responses and promoting TH2 tolerogenic immune responses. Phototherapy improves psoriasis, eosinophilic folliculitis, atopic dermatitis, and pruritus in HIV-infected individuals. There is no compelling proof that UVB or PUVA treatment leads to harmful systemic effects in HIV-infected patients.
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