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The basic model of viral dynamics is a relatively simple set of equations describing the most essential features of the host-pathogen interactions. Coupled with data, it has been used extensively and successfully to reproduce and explain the features of early acute phase of HIV infection and the effects of antiretroviral treatment, as well as to estimate the lifespan of infected cells, viral growth and clearance rates and predict early outcomes under different circumstances. However, it cannot reproduce the entire natural course of untreated HIV infection consistently with constant parameters. Here we show that it is possible to qualitatively reproduce the whole course of untreated HIV infection within the general framework of the basic model by assuming progressively declining viral clearance coupled with viral load. We discuss the interpretation of this model as proof-of-concept that may inspire further research into the role of viral clearance in HIV infection.