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Intersubtype Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Superinfection Following Seroconversion to Primary Infection in Two Injection Drug Users

July 30, 2002


This article is part of The Body PRO's archive. Because it contains information that may no longer be accurate, this article should only be considered a historical document.

This study describes two persons who are each infected with two different strains of HIV-1 (CRF01_AE and subtype B). The persons are injecting drug users participating in a prospective cohort study in Bangkok, Thailand. In both cases, the second infection (called "superinfection" as opposed to primary infection) was detected several weeks after the individuals had developed a strong antiviral response to the primary infection. Molecular and serologic analyses determined that the superinfecting strain belonged to a different subtype from the primary strain.

These data show that some individuals may not have the type or amount of immune response following primary HIV-1 infection to protect against a subsequent infection with a different HIV-1 strain. This finding has important implications for vaccine design, in that vaccines based on specific HIV-1 strains may not protect against all strains. Thus, HIV-1 vaccines will need to include elements from several HIV-1 subtypes to provide complete protection.

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Adapted from:
Journal of Virology
08.02; Vol. 76; No. 15: P. 7444-7452; Artur Ramos; Dale J. Hu; Lily Nguyen; Kim-Oanh Phan; Suphak Vanichseni; Nattawan Promadej; Kachit Choopanya; Margaret Callahan; Nancy L. Young; Janet McNichol; Timothy D. Mastro; Thomas M. Folks; Shambavi Subbarao



This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.

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