UNIT 12.1 General Guidelines for Experimenting with HIV

  1. Karen B. Byers1,
  2. Alan Engelman2,
  3. Benjamin Fontes3

Published Online: 1 MAY 2004

DOI: 10.1002/0471142735.im1201s59

Current Protocols in Immunology

Current Protocols in Immunology

How to Cite

Byers, K. B., Engelman, A. and Fontes, B. 2004. General Guidelines for Experimenting with HIV. Current Protocols in Immunology. 59:12.1:12.1.1–12.1.9.

Author Information

  1. 1

    Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts

  2. 2

    Harvard Medical School and Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts

  3. 3

    Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 MAY 2004
  2. Published Print: FEB 2004


Performing experiments using human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected materials represents a potential biological hazard for the investigator. An intensive training program for laboratory personnel must always precede the actual execution of research involving manipulation of HIV. In addition, appropriate sterile tissue culture techniques are absolute prerequisites for producing meaningful experiments and for achieving safe working conditions. In most circumstances more than one investigator uses the same HIV research facility; therefore, careful training in biosafety is mandatory not only for self-protection, but for the safety of other investigators as well. The first protocol in this unit establishes a general framework for working safely with HIV and the second describes the proper storage of HIV stocks and test supernatants.