Answer to Question #33707 in Microbiology for David Christoffersen
In the latest stage of a HIV infection a patient is diagnosed with AIDS. An ELISA test shows the
presence of antibodies against the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in the patient’s serum.
Why does a patient have an immune deficiency if he or she is making antibodies? Can you please explain this phenomenon to me, I would like to get a clear understanding of this.
It is connected with the fact that closer to the latest stage cell-mediated immunity is supressed, which means a decline of cytotoxic T-lymphocytes activity. New T-helpers are not activated, productivity of specific antibodies is also reduced, whereas the general level of antibodies in blood is high due to the majority of non-specific antibodies.