3 years ago

Inducible HIV RNA transcription assays to measure HIV persistence: pros and cons of a compromise

Inducible HIV RNA transcription assays to measure HIV persistence: pros and cons of a compromise
Marta Massanella, Nicolas Chomont, Johann Plantin
With the increasing number of therapeutic strategies tested in humans to reduce the size of the latent reservoir, the development of a robust, precise and clinical trial scalable assay that measures the frequency of infected cells carrying inducible replication-competent HIV is urgently needed. The size of the pool of cells carrying replication-competent HIV is largely overestimated by DNA assays, as a result of a large proportion of defective viruses, and underestimated by co-culture outgrowth assays. New culture methods that measure the inducible HIV reservoir have been developed during the past few years. In these induction assays, CD4+ T cells from virally suppressed individuals are activated and HIV RNA is measured in cell extracts or cell supernatants. In this review, we summarize the principle and outcomes of these assays and discuss the potential of these methods in the evaluation of HIV eradication strategies.
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