Yale University

Survival of HIV-1 in syringes.

TitleSurvival of HIV-1 in syringes.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication1999
AuthorsAbdala, N., P. C. Stephens, B. P. Griffith, and R. Heimer
JournalJournal of acquired immune deficiency syndromes and human retrovirology : official publication of the International Retrovirology Association
Date Published1999 Jan 1
KeywordsAcquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, HIV-1, Humans, Reproducibility of Results, Sensitivity and Specificity, Substance Abuse, Intravenous, Syringes
AbstractWe performed a study to determine the duration of survival of HIV-1 in syringes typically used by injectors of illicit drugs (IDUs). We describe the effectiveness of a microculture assay in detecting viable virus in volumes of blood typical of those commonly found inside used syringes. Using this assay and modeling the worse-case situation for syringe sharing, we have recovered viable, proliferating HIV-1 from syringes that have been maintained at room temperature for periods in excess of 4 weeks. The percentage of syringes with viable virus varied with the volume of residual blood and the titer of HIV-1 in the blood. These experiments provide a scientific basis for needle exchange schemes, harm reduction, and other interventions among IDUs that support the nonsharing and removal of used syringes from circulation.
Alternate JournalJ. Acquir. Immune Defic. Syndr. Hum. Retrovirol.

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