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HIV Genetic Tests Associated With Improved Survival

Susceptibility tests are helpful for patients with different levels of antiretroviral treatment

TUESDAY, July 21 (HealthDay News) -- Taking the HIV-1 genotypic and phenotypic susceptibility testing (GPT) to guide antiretroviral treatment selection is associated with improved survival of HIV-infected adults, according to a study in the July 21 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Frank J. Palella Jr., M.D., of Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago, and colleagues followed, for a median 3.3 years, a cohort of 2,699 HIV-infected patients who presented at 10 clinics, including 915 who had had GPT. The investigators calculated mortality rates and risk for those who had and hadn't been tested.

Overall, the researchers found that the patients who had GPT had a mortality rate of 2.0 deaths per 100 person-years compared to 2.7 deaths for the untested patients. In subgroup analyses, GPT was associated with better mortality rates in 2,107 patients who had highly active antiretroviral therapy compared to the untested group (2.2 versus 3.2 deaths per 100 person-years) and 921 patients who had triple antiretroviral therapy (2.1 versus 3.1 deaths per 100 person-years).

"We believe that we have provided an important first step in elucidating a possible causal relation between GPT and better survival," the authors conclude. "Future work is needed to replicate our findings, elucidate further on patient subgroups for whom GPT has a particularly beneficial effect on survival, and determine the pathways through which GPT's posited effect is mediated."

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