The order of appearance of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) nucleic acids was examined in monocyte-derived macrophages following a high multiplicity infection with macrophage-tropic virus. Using the polymerase chain reaction, viral DNA was first detected 2 h after infection and continued to accumulate over the next 24 h. Transcripts representing and splicing were detected by 24 h, and transcripts representing splicing were detected by 48 h after infection. Coincident with the appearance of transcripts, new synthesis of cellular and extracellular p24 antigen began, multinucleated giant cells formed and progeny infectious virus emerged. This analytical system provides a foundation for further studies on the effects of antiviral agents and cellular factors on the replication cycle of HIV-1 in non-transformed, primary monocyte-derived macrophages.


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