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dormancy vs. latency

What is the difference between these two words when it comes to HIV?

Some websites use dormancy and latency to means the same thing, the "window period". Latency is generally used as "window period". However, "dormancy" is used to many different things.

Dormancy is used to refer to the possibility that HIV stays in your body 'hidden' in the lymph nodes and undetected for up to 10 years. Then it's used to asymptomatic HIV, that is the person may have HIV but not display symptoms as in not reaching AIDS. I think the body of medical research consensus that HIV does not have symptoms.

Confusion lingers on, does dormancy mean that the virus can go undetected by standard tests (ELISA, Oraquick, Orasure) up to 10 year? (This is not being rhetorical, its a real question)

Research shows that only 1% of people getting tested might have an extended window period, and these are usually people that their immune system is already compromised (i.e. leukemia).

I also speculate that these websites that talk about dormancy in a 10 year period might be outdated as in they don't realize that better tests that have been developed. They might be perpetuating myths about HIV virus, and this is not an odd occurrence since we have ultra conservative groups always trying to influence our perception about anything that deals with sexuality. And lastly, it might be a problem of the English being used, maybe Dormancy is used more in the UK and Latency more in the United States, the web makes no distinction nor does it tell you that you are reading a UK website.

If anyone has a clear answer for the vocabulary disconnect please add it to this thread. And about dormancy and latency?



1 Responses
219662 tn?1223862160
Same thing - no real difference
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