Detecting whether patients with HIV/AIDS are infected with even small amounts of drug-resistant forms of the virus can be done with a test developed by researchers at Duke University Medical Center.
Other tests only pick up drug-resistant strains when they represent a significant portion of the virus in a person's bloodstream.
The test developed at Duke may enable doctors to more accurately predict which medicines will work for patients and which drugs will ultimately fail.
The study has been published online in the journal Nature Methods.
So far, the test has been used for research purposes only. Duke is seeking patents that will enable it to develop a diagnostic screening for future commercial use.
A private industry backer is still needed, along with other studies that demonstrate the process helps improve treatment outcome.