I asked the CDC if the PCR DNA test was accurate for the detection of HIV and their response was "NO". They said that there are several reasons why listed below.
- The competency of the lab performing the test.
- How the sample was handled.
- That even an infected person might not show a detectible level of virus in this test.
- This test is not FDA approved. Now, my questions to you are: Answers to the above, plus, some more.
- If coupled with an antibody test and both are negative, can a person still be infected?
- When would a person not have a detectible level of virus to be picked up?
- Why is this test only for the HIV I strain? Please respond, I look forward to your answers.
The answer from the FDA in your first 1-4 are correct. For the next 3, in a reliable lab, if both tests are negative after 2-4 weeks of exposure, I would say the person is not infected. I have never seen a person with a negative PCR that was infected. As we have discussed on this forum numerous times, there have been a few cases of HIV antibody negative HIV infection, but they have all had positive DNA PCR or viral load tests. HIV-1 and 2 very in their genetic sequence. PCR testing requires DNA primers and probes (small pieces of DNA) that have very specific sequences for each virus. HIV-2 PCR primers will not work with HIV-1 and vice versa. MH