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J Infect Dis. 1999 Apr;179(4):871-82.

Correlation of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 RNA levels in blood and the female genital tract.

Author information

1
Division of AIDS, STD, and TB Laboratory Research, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia 30333, USA. ceh4@cdc.gov

Abstract

In this study, the correlations of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) RNA levels in blood plasma, vaginal secretions, and cervical mucus of 52 HIV-1-infected women were determined. The amount of cell-free HIV-1 RNA in blood plasma was correlated with that in vaginal secretions (Spearman's rank correlation coefficient (r) = 0.64, P<.001). In both blood plasma and vaginal secretions, the amounts of cell-free and cell-associated HIV-1 RNA were highly correlated (r=0.76, P<.01 and r=0.85, P<.01, respectively). Cell-free HIV-1 RNA levels in blood plasma and vaginal secretions were negatively correlated with CD4+ T lymphocyte count (r=-0.44, P<.01 and r=-0.40, P<.01, respectively). Similar to the effect observed in blood plasma, initiation of antiretroviral therapy significantly reduced the amount of HIV-1 RNA in vaginal secretions. These findings suggest that factors that lower blood plasma virus load may also reduce the risk of perinatal and female-to-male heterosexual transmission by lowering vaginal virus load.

PMID:
10068582
DOI:
10.1086/314656
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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