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October 1988

Effect of Zidovudine on Serum Human Immunodeficiency Virus Core Antigen Levels: Results From a Placebo-Controlled Trial

Arch Intern Med. 1988;148(10):2151-2153. doi:10.1001/archinte.1988.00380100045010

• We assessed the effect of antiviral therapy on serum human immunodeficiency virus core antigen (HIV-Ag) levels in patients enrolled in the phase II trial on zidovudine for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) and AIDS—related complex. Human immunodeficiency virus core antigen was detected in 45% of subjects at entry (59% with AIDS and 37% of patients with AIDS—related complex). Median HIV-Ag levels in zidovudine-treated subjects fell from 111 pg/mL at entry to 46 pg/mL at four weeks, while levels in placebo recipients did not change significantly. Decline in HIV-Ag in zidovudine recipients was sustained through 16 weeks of treatment and was significantly different from the placebo group. Anti—p24 antibody levels did not change in either group. We conclude that in patients with HIV-antigenemia changes in HIV-Ag level are an important marker of anti—retroviral activity.

(Arch Intern Med 1988;148:2151-2153)