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Aptima HIV-1 RNA
Oct 9, 2006

FDA just approved, Aptima HIV-1 RNA which helps detect genetic material to diagnose the HIV-1 virus before antibodies appear.

FDA said also said It can help confirm presence of the virus if antibodies are found.

Now my questions now is , does it mean that this medication can now find the presence of hiv even before antibodies show up?

Is that an edge is has over elisa and western blot test that only detects hiv antibodies?

Response from Dr. Daar

Just to be clear this is a test, not a medication and it does detect the virus, much like other virologic tests such as those that measure viral load. It certainly has some utility in the early identification of infection in those still antibody negative. Nevertheless, using this type of test to make an early diagnosis still requires care to avoid misinterpretation of false positives.

For most people with HIV antibodies the results are still confirmed by a Western blot and once found positive they are followed by standard "viral load" testing.

Best, Eric


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