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Managing Side Effects of HIV TreatmentManaging Side Effects of HIV Treatment
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brief HIV question
Nov 18, 2005

Dr. Conway, Do you know if there is any relation between the amount of virus acquired during infection and the severity or lackthereof of Acute Retroviral Syndrome? Or does this only rely on the integrity of the person's immune system?

Response from Dr. Conway

The intensity of the acute retroviral syndrome may depend on the type of virus that is acquired, how much gets in and the route of entry (IV perhaps being worse). It may also depend on the status of the host immune response in general and whether it has previously encountered the virus or not. All of these things play a role although it is hard to quantitate the impact of each in general, much less if we were trying to figure it out in a single individual. However, if we ever determine the host factors that protect against more severe acute illness, we may have a better idea of what an HIV vaccine needs to stimulate in the host.

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