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Problems encountered in conventional HIV 1/2 Algorithms: lack of necessity for immunoblot assays to confirm repeated ELISA reactive results

Pelin Yuksel
Suat Saribas
Mert Kuskucu
Sibel Islak Mutcali
Erdogan Kosan
Zafer Habip
Mehmet Demirci
Eda Salihoglu Kara
Ilhan Birinci
Reyhan Caliskan
Harika Oyku Dinc
Kenan Midilli
Tevhide Ziver
Bekir Kocazeybek


Background: The use of conventional (serologically based) HIV 1/2 diagnostic algorithms has become controversial in recent years.
Objectives: Sera from patients who underwent verification tests were evaluated because repeated ELISA-reactive results demonstrated a HIV1+HIV2 positive band pattern.
Methods: The line immunoassay (LIA) test was used for repeated HIV enzyme immunoassays (EIA)-reactive sera in patients at three centers. The Bio-Rad Geenius™ HIV 1/2 and the HIV-1 RNA tests were used. HIV-1 and RNA HIV-2 were investigated using PCR.
Results: LIA was used to evaluate 3,224 out of 10,591 samples with repeated ELISA reactivity (30%). We found that 32 (1%) of the sera, along with HIV1 bands and HIV2 gp36 bands, were positive. Only 28 of the 32 verified serum samples with gp36 bands were repeated, and no gp36 band positivity was detected using the Bio-Rad Geenius™ HIV-1/2 confirmatory assay in these serum samples. The HIV-2 proviral DNAs were also negative. Therefore, we excluded the possibility of HIV1+2 co-infection. All samples from the 32 patients were positive for HIV-1 RNA.
Conclusion: Our findings highlight the need to exclude confirmatory tests like the LIA test from the current diagnostic HIV algorithm and replace it with rapid HIV-1 and HIV-2 confirmatory immunochromotographic tests.

Keywords: HIV, AIDS, HIV-2.

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eISSN: 1729-0503
print ISSN: 1680-6905