Independent isolates of HIV-1 differ widely in their tropisms for CD4-positive T-cell lines. This study demonstrates that tropisms of 10 different HIV-1 isolates also differ widely, as much as 1000-fold, for normal peripheral blood lymphocytes (PBLs) cultured from any given donor. This could only be reproducibly demonstrated by end point titrations. In addition, the degree of susceptibility of PBLs from 12 random donors to productive infection by any given HIV-1 isolate also varied in a reproducible pattern from donor to donor, with some donors relatively resistant to one or a few isolates. The HIV susceptibility pattern of each donor was manifested at the level of the CD4 lymphocyte and it segregated within a family, conclusively demonstrating that it was genetically determined.
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