HTLV-I and HTLV-II infections among HIV-1 seropositive patients in Sao Paulo, Brazil

A. Caterino de Araujo, J. Simao do Rosario Casseb, E. Neitzert, M. L. Xavier de Souza, F. Mammano, A. Del Mistro, A. De Rossi, L. Chieco-Bianchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


To estimate the presence of, and the risk factors for HTLV-I and HTLV-II infections among HIV-1 infected subjects in Sao Paulo, Brazil, a serosurvey was performed in 471 HIV-1 infected patients, including 216 intravenous drug addicts (IVDA), 229 homosexual/bisexual men, and 26 with other risk factors. Serum samples were screened for HTLV seroreactivity by ELISA; reactive samples were analyzed by Western Blot (WB), using whole HTLV-I lysate as antigen. To confirm and discriminate HTLV-I and HTLV-II infections, sera presenting any bands on WB were further analyzed by a WB containing recombinant HTLV-I and HTLV-II proteins (WB 2.3), and by enzyme immunoassays using synthetic peptides specific for envelope proteins (Synth-EIA). In 22 cases, cell samples were available for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) studies. On WB, 114 sera were reactive and, of these, 37 and 25 were concordantly positive on both WB 2.3 and Synth-EIA procedures for HTLV-I and HTLV-II specific antibodies, respectively; 37 specimens were negative on both assays, and 15 gave discordant or indeterminate results. PCR findings confirmed concordant results obtained in the discriminatory serological assays. The prevalence rates of HTLV-I and HTLV-II infections were 15.3% and 11.1% in IVDA, and 0.9% and 0.4% in homosexual/bisexual men, respectively. No case of HTLV-I/HTLV-II co-infection was found.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-171
Number of pages7
JournalEuropean Journal of Epidemiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1994


  • Intravenous drug abuse
  • PCR
  • Seroprevalence
  • Synthetic peptides

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology


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