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J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2003 Jul 1;33(3):349-55.

Development of a new less-sensitive enzyme immunoassay for detection of early HIV-1 infection.

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Blood Centers of the Pacific, San Francisco, California 94118, USA.


The sensitive/less-sensitive (S/LS) enzyme immunoassay (EIA) testing strategy for discriminating "early" from "longstanding" HIV infection has been widely applied for detecting recent seroconverters and estimating HIV incidence rates. The originally developed assay (3A11-LS EIA; Abbott Laboratories, Abbott Park, IL) involved performance of LS EIAs using a bead-based assay that required specialized equipment and reagents of limited availability. In contrast, 96-microwell-based EIAs are more universally applied for HIV serodiagnosis throughout the world. The authors report development and preliminary validation of an LS protocol using an EIA in a 96-well format: the Vironostika HIV-1 MicroElisa System (Vironostika-LS EIA; Bio Merieux, Raleigh, NC). The results with samples from recent HIV-1 seroconverters, persons with longstanding HIV-1 asymptomatic infection, patients on highly active antiretroviral therapy, and AIDS patients show a high degree of correlation between the Vironostika-LS EIA and 3A11-LS EIA. The authors also demonstrate that the Abbott 3A11-LS EIA and Vironostika-LS EIA performed comparably on HIV-1-positive samples from persons infected with non-B HIV-1 subtypes. These results support the potential use of the Vironostika-LS EIA for detection of recent HIV-1 infections for incidence projections and for other epidemiologic, clinical, and molecular surveillance applications.

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