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Use of real-time PCR and molecular beacons to detect virus replication in human immunodeficiency virus type 1-infected individuals on prolonged effective antiretroviral therapy.

Lewin SR, Vesanen M, Kostrikis L, Hurley A, Duran M, Zhang L, Ho DD, Markowitz M

  • Journal Journal of virology

  • Published 23 Jul 1999

  • Volume 73

  • ISSUE 7

  • Pagination 6099-103

  • DOI 10.1128/JVI.73.7.6099-6103.1999


We have designed a novel, precise, and sensitive assay to measure unspliced (US) human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) mRNA in peripheral blood mononuclear cells of HIV-1-infected individuals by using real-time PCR and molecular beacons. Individuals were classified as either well suppressed (WS) or partially suppressed, based on longitudinal measurements of plasma HIV-1 RNA. The proportion of individuals with US mRNA undetectable over time was significantly higher among WS individuals; however, 30% of WS subjects still had detectable US mRNA after 24 months of effective antiviral therapy.