Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Med Virol. 1986 Aug;19(4):325-34.

Testing for antibodies to AIDS-associated retrovirus (HTLV-III/LAV) by indirect fixed cell immunofluorescence: specificity, sensitivity, and applications.

Erratum in

  • J Med Virol 1986 Dec;20(4):390.


Seropositivity to the AIDS-associated retrovirus, HTLV-III/LAV, has profound implications. Simple and reliable tests are needed to detect such antibodies. A rapid, sensitive indirect immunofluorescence assay (IFA) on acetone-fixed virus-producing CEM/LAV-N1 cells was adapted for detection of human antibodies to HTLV-III/LAV. Specific and nonspecific patterns of of immunofluorescent reactivity were easily distinguished, and results paralleled those obtained by Western blotting and radioimmunoprecipitation (RIP), indicating that there is no need to confirm IFA positivity. In contrast, the commercial enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) was less reliable. False positives occurred with sera from seven hemophiliacs that were negative on Western blots, and false-negative reactions were observed on two occasions. These involved low-titer AIDS-patients' sera that were positive on Western blots, and from one of which virus was successfully isolated. Our results emphasize the requirement for confirmatory assays when the ELISA test is used for primary screening of sera for antibodies to HTLV-III/LAV. The IFA method is especially well-suited to quantitative analysis of serum antibody levels. Our data suggest that serum antibody titers rise as disease progression occurs, ultimately falling as severe complications ensue. It is suggested that in laboratories where the demand for HTLV-III/LAV antibody testing is not excessive (1,000-2,000 sera/month), IFA could serve as the only serological assay for both screening and epidemiological purposes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk