The serological diagnosis of HIV infection is usually made on the basis of the detection of circulating antibodies specific for viral antigens gp41, gp120 and gp160. Despite using recombinant immunogenic oligopeptides, which improved the sensitivity and specificity of immunological tests, a number of both false-positive and false-negative reactions have been reported. Although the emergence of new viral serotypes or recent infection could be responsible, at least partly, for the low sensitivity of serological assays in detecting early antibody responses, false-positive results could be explained by crossreactions with unrelated antigens. Spehar and Strand recently demonstrated the crossreactivity of anti-gp41 murine monoclonal antibodies with the human cytoskeletal protein alpha-actinin, and antibodies reacting with both the immunodominant region of HIV gp41 and alpha-actinin have been found in the sera of HIV-infected individuals
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