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J Infect Dis. 2002 Nov 15;186(10):1403-11. Epub 2002 Oct 29.

Intensification and stimulation therapy for human immunodeficiency virus type 1 reservoirs in infected persons receiving virally suppressive highly active antiretroviral therapy.

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Dorrance Hamilton Laboratories, Center for Human Virology, Division of Infectious Diseases, Department of Medicine, Jefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107, USA.


Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) has led to significant changes in mortality and morbidity in the human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) epidemic. Nevertheless, because of molecular mechanisms of viral persistence, HAART does not eradicate HIV-1. Didanosine and hydroxyurea were added to the antiretroviral regimens of 3 HIV-1-infected men who were receiving stable HAART and who had HIV-1 RNA levels <50 copies/mL at the initiation of the study protocol, as a novel intensification to attack cryptic viral replication; low-dose OKT3 was then administered, followed by a course of interleukin-2, to stimulate latent provirus. Replication-competent virus was undetectable after treatment, and plasma viral RNA was either undetectable or <5 copies/mL. In trial periods during which no antiretroviral therapy was administered, the patients developed plasma viral rebound. This translational approach combines novel intensification and stimulation therapy to deplete residual HIV-1 reservoirs. Additional experimental approaches must be developed if HIV-1 eradication is to become possible in patients receiving virally suppressive HAART.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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