what does HIV DNA prove?
Jun 25, 2001
Dear Dr. Young,
This is the third time I am asking this question, please help. what does the hiv dna prove; that there is hiv in the cells even though you have and undectable viral load. and does this make Hiv more dangerous. that it is not detectable in viral load test.
Response from Dr. Young
The presence of HIV DNA says that there are cells present that are infected with the HIV virus. The viral load that we usually talk about measures viral RNA, not DNA. The former is indicative of free virus in the blood.
The use of potent combination drugs for HIV prevent the production of virus from infected cells, hence viral DNA probes will be positive when the circulating viral RNA is undetectable.
There is no relationship between the ability to detect viral DNA and the pathogenicity (disease-causing ability) of the virus. BY
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