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Blocked early-stage latency in the peripheral blood cells of certain individuals infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1.

Authors
  • Seshamma, T
  • Bagasra, O
  • Trono, D
  • Baltimore, D
  • Pomerantz, R J
Type
Published Article
Journal
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Publication Date
Nov 15, 1992
Volume
89
Issue
22
Pages
10663–10667
Identifiers
PMID: 1279688
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infections of humans have a natural history characterized by a variable but usually slow progression to an immunodeficient state. We have described a molecular model of HIV-1 proviral latency in certain cell lines, characterized by extremely low or undetectable levels of unspliced genomic HIV-1-specific RNA but significant levels of multiply spliced HIV-1-specific RNA. We have utilized a quantitative reverse transcriptase-initiated polymerase chain reaction to measure the levels of various HIV-1 RNA species in peripheral blood mononuclear cells. The median level of multiply spliced HIV-1 RNA was dramatically higher than the median level of unspliced viral RNA in asymptomatic individuals. In addition, HIV-1 RNA patterns characterized by at least a 10-fold excess of multiply spliced to unspliced viral RNA were significantly more common in asymptomatic individuals than in patients with the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. We suggest that asymptomatic clinical HIV-1 infection is characterized by a preponderance of HIV-1-infected peripheral blood cells blocked at an early stage of HIV-1 infection. This viral expression pattern, which we have called blocked early-stage latency, may constitute a reservoir of latently infected cells in certain HIV-1-infected persons.

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