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J Med Virol. 1997 Mar;51(3):202-9.

Virologic, immunologic, and clinical follow-up of a couple infected by the human immunodeficiency virus type one, group O.

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Department of Infection and Immunity, Institute of Tropical Medicine, Antwerp, Belgium.


The pathogenic course (virologic, immunologic, and clinical changes) of infection due to human immunodeficiency virus type one (HIV-1) group O viruses is unknown at present. To address this issue, serial HIV-1 isolates from a married couple (patients A and B) infected with a group O virus were analyzed to determine the temporal association between disease status and alterations in several parameters including plasma viral burden as measured by semiquantitative polymerase chain reaction, changes in CD4+ T cells, presence of neutralizing antibodies, and the ability to induce syncytia on the MT2 cells. For patient A who has been asymptomatic for at least 8 years, both the absence of syncytium-inducing (SI) variants and the presence of autologous and heterologous neutralizing antibodies correlated with a clinically healthier status. In contrast, a switch from NSI to SI variants was observed in patient B in 1990, followed by an expanded in vitro host range, increased viral burden, and a sharp decrease in CD4+ T cells 4 years later. Moreover, plasma obtained from this patient uniformly failed to neutralize both autologous and heterologous viruses. These observations in patient B correlated with a slightly unfavorable clinical status. Based on our preliminary results, it appears that the pathogenic course of infections due to group O viruses is similar to that reported previously for infections due to group M viruses.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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