Immunoglobulin G3-specific antibodies as a marker for early diagnosis of HIV infection in children

Maurizio Aricò, Désirée Caselli, Massimo Marconi, Maria Antonietta Avanzini, Angelo Colombo, Giuliana Pasinetti, Anna Maccabruni, Elio G. Rondanelli, G. Roberto Burgio

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Early diagnosis of HIV infection in the child of an HIV-infected mother may be difficult as HIV-specific immunoglobulin (Ig) G antibodies are transmitted to the fetus transplacentally. In an attempt to provide a new, simpler tool for early identification of HIV-infected children we analysed the HIV-specific IgG subclass pattern during the first year of life. One hundred and one samples were collected from 35 children born to HIV-seropositive mothers, among whom 18 seroreverted during follow-up and 17 were HIV-infected (two P1 and 15 P2 according to the Centers for Disease Control classification). Serum HIV-specific IgG3 was detectable at least in one sample in 26 out of 35 children. All 17 HIV-infected children showed persistently detectable specific IgG3, both with stable or progressive disease. Out of the 18 uninfected children who seroreverted during follow-up, nine were HIV-specific IgG3-negative when first tested and nine lost HIV-specific-IgG3 within 28 weeks after birth. The correlation of the serological results with clinical information and any other diagnostic tool on each child suggests that the clearance of specific-IgG3 antibodies heralds seroconversion in uninfected passive antibody-carrier children. This observation provides the basis for a new, simple and effective method for early diagnosis of HIV infection in children born to seropositive mothers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1315-1318
Number of pages4
JournalAIDS (London, England)
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1991


  • HIV infection
  • Immunoglobulin G subclass
  • Paediatric AIDS

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy


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