In this study, we have observed that a dissociation may occur in vitro between syncytia formation and HIV spreading. Efficient HIV spreading and virus replication occurred either in HIV-infected LFA-1+ lymphocytes treated with anti-LFA-1 mAb or in HIV-infected lymphocytes genetically deficient in LFA-1, despite the fact that syncytia formation was completely suppressed. Therefore, these results indicate that syncytia formation cannot be used as the sole parameter to evaluate the spread of HIV in vitro.
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