Expression of human immunodeficiency virus antigen (HIV-Ag) in serum and cerebrospinal fluid during acute and chronic infection

J Goudsmit, F DeWolf, D A Paul, Leon G Epstein, JMA Lange, WJA Krone, H Speelman, E C Wolters, J Van der Noordaa, J M Oleske, H J Van der Helm, R A Coutinho

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Abstract

Human immunodeficiency virus antigen (HIV-Ag) was detected in the serum of most adult (13/16) and paediatric (6/6) AIDS patients and rarely in the serum of symptomless seropositive controls (1/13). It was present in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of all 5 children and most (5/9) adults with AIDS-related encephalopathy, but not in the CSF of 13 symptomless seropositive controls, of whom 8 had antibody in the CSF. A longitudinal study of 1 of the controls with antibody in the CSF showed that HIV-Ag in CSF was present transiently before the occurrence of antibody in the CSF. In serial samples of serum from 35 men who seroconverted HIV-Ag was detected in 11 persons—in 5 before seroconversion and in 6 after. 3 of the 6 who became antigenaemic after seroconversion remained so for the rest of the follow-up. AIDS was diagnosed in 1 patient, 3 months after HIV-Ag was first detected in serum and 6 months after seroconversion. The findings suggest that HIV-Ag appears early and transiently in primary HIV infection. Antibody production follows, after which HIV-Ag may disappear. Its persistence or reappearance seems to correlate with clinical, immunological, and neurological deterioration.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)177-180
JournalLancet
Volume2
StatePublished - 1986

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