1. Microbiology and Infectious Disease
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Viral Latency: Down but not out

  1. Erin T Larragoite
  2. Adam M Spivak  Is a corresponding author
  1. University of Utah, United States
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Cite this article as: eLife 2019;8:e53363 doi: 10.7554/eLife.53363
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The timing of antiretroviral therapy influences the size of the latent reservoir.

Without treatment, cells infected with actively replicating virus (productively infected cells; shown in green) create infectious viruses. A minority of infected cells contain viruses that can persist indefinitely as a latent reservoir (latently infected cells; shown in gray), and these viruses can potentially be reactivated at a later date. Treatment administered during the acute phase of infection (that is, within days or weeks of primary infection; yellow curve) results in a smaller latent reservoir than when treatment is initiated early (within six months of infection, light blue) or during chronic infection (more than 6 months since infection, violet). If treatment is stopped (dashed line), the virus reactivates from these reservoirs at similar levels to rekindle active infection and re-seed the latent reservoir.

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