Tools for Visualizing HIV in Cure Research
Purpose of Review
The long-lived HIV reservoir remains a major obstacle for an HIV cure. Current techniques to analyze this reservoir are generally population-based. We highlight recent developments in methods visualizing HIV, which offer a different, complementary view, and provide indispensable information for cure strategy development.
Recent advances in fluorescence in situ hybridization techniques enabled key developments in reservoir visualization. Flow cytometric detection of HIV mRNAs, concurrently with proteins, provides a high-throughput approach to study the reservoir on a single-cell level. On a tissue level, key spatial information can be obtained detecting viral RNA and DNA in situ by fluorescence microscopy. At total-body level, advancements in non-invasive immuno-positron emission tomography (PET) detection of HIV proteins may allow an encompassing view of HIV reservoir sites.
HIV imaging approaches provide important, complementary information regarding the size, phenotype, and localization of the HIV reservoir. Visualizing the reservoir may contribute to the design, assessment, and monitoring of HIV cure strategies in vitro and in vivo.
KeywordsHIV cure In situ hybridization (ISH) Flow cytometry Microscopy RNA flow Viral reservoir Positron emission tomography (PET)
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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