Article Text


Retrospective determination of HIV-1 status by a PCR method on paraffin wax embedded sections.
  1. T Slavik,
  2. M Wolfaardt,
  3. H van Zyl,
  4. I W Simson
  1. Department of Anatomical Pathology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Pretoria, South Africa.


    AIM--To develop a simple but reliable polymerase chain reaction (PCR) method to determine the HIV-1 status of patients on formalin fixed, paraffin wax embedded lymph node tissue. METHODS--Fifty lymph node specimens, 20 from HIV-1 seropositive and 30 from HIV-1 seronegative patients, were analysed. Lymph nodes with a variety of disease conditions were included in the study. Tissue sections were treated with a DNA extraction buffer containing proteinase K and the crude cell lysate was used in PCR analysis. Nested primers were used to amplify HIV-1 DNA sequences coding for gag, pol and env proteins. PCR products were demonstrated by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. Results were then compared with HIV-1 serology of the patients from whom the tissue was obtained. RESULTS--The PCR method yielded a specificity of 100%, a sensitivity of 95%, a positive predictive value of 100%, and a negative predictive value of 97% when compared with HIV-1 serology. The kappa statistic (0.958) showed an excellent agreement between the PCR method and serology. Furthermore, HIV-1 DNA was demonstrated in lymph node tissue from a serologically unconfirmed acquired immunodeficiency syndrome case necropsied in 1982. CONCLUSION--This PCR method is a simple and reliable means of retrospectively determining the HIV-1 status of patients using formalin fixed, paraffin wax embedded lymph node tissue.

    Statistics from

    Request Permissions

    If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.