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June 8, 1984

French, US viral isolates compared in search for cause of AIDS

JAMA. 1984;251(22):2901-2909. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03340460003001

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It still is to be determined if French and American investigators have isolated the same virus—or if there are substantial differences in their isolates—in the search for the cause of acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS).

However, there is mounting belief that the retrovirus recently identified by National Cancer Institute (NCI) investigators (Bethesda, Md) and the lymphadenopathy virus (LAV) reported last year by a group at the Institut Pasteur, Paris (JAMA [MEDICAL NEWS] 1983;250:1010-1015), are the same.

The final word awaits physical analysis of the two agents. "But, from the pattern of antibody reactions, I would be surprised if there is very much difference," said M. G. Sarngadharan, PhD, of Litton Bionetics, Kensington, Md, a member of the NCI group.

Sarngadharan spoke recently at a symposium on infectious agents in blood held by the American Red Cross in Washington, DC. At the same meeting, James Curran, MD, director of the Centers