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HIV Drug ResistanceHIV Drug Resistance
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Apr 17, 2001

Will an Elisa 1 @ 2 detect all the sub types ie hiv o etc. I tested neg Elisa 1@2 at 4,5,6,7,8,12,13,15 months and pcr dna at 4 and 12 months. How do i know i don't have an impaired system to produce antibodies

Response from Dr. Little

It is not clear to me why you are having HIV Ab tests done so frequently. In general, if you have a negative HIV EIA 1/2 at 6 and 12 months after a possible exposure and have no other unusual features to your case, I would feel very comfortable saying that you are HIV negative.

Regarding the rare subytpes O and N, traditional HIV 1/2 antibody testing may miss these subtypes (but they are quite rare in the US and without a clear risk, I would not pursue testing). See recent questions for a more complete discussion of subtype O and N infection and detection. For subtype N and O, I believe that type-specific peptide assays for antibodies HIV-1 subtype O and N are needed. There are two newer HIV 1/2 antibody tests (the Abbott Plus and Ortho Enhanced) which have been used successfully to detect subtype O infection. The best way to know that you don't have an impaired ability to produce antibodies is the absence of prior infections typical of this type of defect. There are screening tests for general antibody levels, but these are not typically done without some other history to suggest that this may be the problem.

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