In the 5 years since the identification of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV-1) as the causative agent of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), we can be grateful for the tremendous progress in our knowledge of the basic biology of this agent. We also have a good, but by no means complete, picture of the serological response in people infected with HIV-1. A wide range of laboratory tests are available, some better suited to the research laboratory while others are commercially produced and performed tens of millions of times each year. Taken together, these tests have produced benefits ranging from greatly increased safety of the blood supply to in vitro and clinical assessment of promising therapeutic agents for AIDS. In this issue of The Journal, Stramer et al1 report their investigation of markers for HIV-1 infection in closely spaced serial samples from paid plasma donors; their report adds valuable information to
Dodd RY, Barker LF. Early Markers of HIV-1 Infection in Plasma Donors. JAMA. 1989;262(1):92–93. doi:10.1001/jama.1989.03430010104041
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