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PCR inhibitors
Oct 15, 2006

I follow babies born to HIV+ mothers and we routinely perform HIV DNA by PCR and HIV RNA by PCR at set intervals. We are seeing more DNA test that are unable to be run due to PCR inhibitors. The HIV RNA by PCR will often read as <50copies/ml, but this too is likely unreliable, as the same process is used to run this test as is the DNA test. What are the likely causes of PCR inhibitors, and is the RNA accurate if detected on DNA test? Should the test(s) just be repeated?

Response from Dr. Holodniy

I have no idea what the lab is refering to. As long as the blood is drawn in the right kind of blood collection tube and is not hemolyzed, there should not be a problem if the infant is HIV infected.


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