The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) DNA was performed on specimens from 197 homosexual and bisexual men enrolled in studies of HIV-1 infection. Thirty cycles of amplification were conducted, followed by detection with probes corresponding to two gag primer pairs (SK 38/39 and SK 101/145). Of 107 men who were HIV-1 antibody-negative, 105(98%) were PeR-negative. Two who were initially PeR-positive antibodynegative were PCR- and antibody-negative on repeat testing of both the same specimen and specimens drawn 8–10 months later; this suggests that the first PCR results were false-positive. Of 90 men who were antibody-positive, PCR was positive in 87 (97%), including all 13 with AIDS, all 22 with AIDS-related conditions, all 11 with generalized lymphadenopathy only, and 41(93%) of 44 without signsor symptoms of HIV-1 infection. On repeat testing, all 3 PCR-negative, antibodypositive men were PCR-positive. In this population and with this technique, PCR had excellent agreement with the HIV-1 antibody test.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Received 9 May 1989; revised 22 September 1989. Informed consent was obtained from all participants. Guidelines of the US Department of Health and Human Services and the State of California were followed in the conduct of this clinical research. The San Francisco City Clinic Cohort Study is supported by U621 CCU900523-o3-5, Centers for Disease Control, Atlanta, GA. Presented in part, 29th Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, Houston, September 1989. Reprints and correspondence: Dr. Alan R. Lifson, San Francisco, Department of Public Health, AIDS Office, Research Branch, 25 Van Ness Ave., Suite 500, San Francisco, CA 94102. * Presentaddress: CaliforniaStateDepartmentof Health Services,Berkeley.