The Body: The Complete HIV/AIDS Resource
Follow Us Follow Us on Facebook Follow Us on Twitter Download Our App 
Professionals >> Visit The Body PROThe Body en Espanol
Ask the Experts About

Understanding Your LabsUnderstanding Your Labs
Rollover images to visit our other forums!
Recent AnswersAsk a Question
  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

PCR and Antigen Testing

Oct 13, 1998

Dear Doctor, Is PCR another name for ELISA or Western Blot? The word "Gold Standard" is reffered to which? Is it true to say Antegen testing of the presence of the virus is effective only imediately after infection. I mean it does not show any results on well positive blood? Which test can show the presence of the virus itself, not the 'effects' of the virus? Thanks.

Response from Dr. Holodniy

ELISA and Western blot assays are used to determine the presence of antibodies to HIV. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) detects or quantitates the actual virus in blood plasma or blood cells. The antigen test you mention is p24 antigen, which is a piece or protein component of the virus. P24 antigen is present during acute infection, just before and just after the development of antibodies. It then reappears late in infection when the immune system has lost control and the virus replicates to very high levels. MH

Recreational Drugs and Their Affect on Testing
Results of Viral load test

  • Email Email
  • Glossary Glossary

 Get Email Notifications When This Forum Updates or Subscribe With RSS



This forum is designed for educational purposes only, and experts are not rendering medical, mental health, legal or other professional advice or services. If you have or suspect you may have a medical, mental health, legal or other problem that requires advice, consult your own caregiver, attorney or other qualified professional.

Experts appearing on this page are independent and are solely responsible for editing and fact-checking their material. Neither nor any advertiser is the publisher or speaker of posted visitors' questions or the experts' material.

Review our complete terms of use and copyright notice.

Powered by ExpertViewpoint