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Cloning Vectors for Antiretroviral Resistance Testing

In a journal article by Sutton and associates, a better technique for antiretroviral resistance testing was proposed. The researchers tried to propose the said methodology due to the difficulty and slowness of the present techniques in resistance testing of Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 or HIV-1 (Sutton, 1999). The antiretroviral resistance testing of HIV-1 involves the cloning of HIV-1 PCR products from the patients’ specimens.

After which, from pooled populations, genotyping and phenotyping are done by sequencing in order to detect mutations of the virus. These processes are usually carried out by standard ligase-mediated cloning which is a very slow and complicated process. Furthermore, there are times that minority detections are not identified by this method (Sutton, 1999). It is for this very reason that the researchers constructed a more efficient and useful method.

The method employs a simple HIV-1 sequence specific uracil deglycosylase-mediated cloning method by means of vectors and primers (Sutton, 1999). Although there is no explicitly stated hypothesis, the objective of the study is to prove that the proposed technique is more advantageous than that of the standard technique used presently. Results of the study favorably exhibit that the researchers’ method is a better way of cloning the virus as well as a better way of detecting resistant mutations.

The new technique is more rapid, accurate and simple than conventional procedure. In addition, minority mutations are detected on the cloned virus from the proposed technique, which are otherwise not detected from the pooled populations (Sutton, 1999). The article is in sum, well-written and informative although it is written in a very technical approach. The study is very significant and relevant specially in improving clinical management.

Furthermore, its many advantages make it an economical method for HIV laboratory research. The results of the study are an important contribution to the development of antiretroviral resistance testing for clinical management.

Reference Sutton, L. , Picado, J. M. , De Pascuale, M. P. , Savara, A. V. & D’ Aquila, R. T. (1999). Human Immunodeficiency Virus Type 1 Cloning Vectors for Antiretroviral Resistance Testing. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, 37, 9: 2943-2951.

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