Models of SIV rebound after treatment interruption that involve multiple reactivation events

Christiaan H. Van Dorp, Jessica M. Conway, Dan H. Barouch, James B. Whitney, Alan S. Perelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


In order to assess the efficacy of novel HIV-1 treatments leading to a functional cure, the time to viral rebound is frequently used as a surrogate endpoint. The longer the time to viral rebound, the more efficacious the therapy. In support of such an approach, mathematical models serve as a connection between the size of the latent reservoir and the time to HIV-1 rebound after treatment interruption. The simplest of such models assumes that a single successful latent cell reactivation event leads to observable viremia after a period of exponential viral growth. Here we consider a generalization developed by Pinkevych et al. and Hill et al. of this simple model in which multiple reactivation events can occur, each contributing to the exponential growth of the viral load. We formalize and improve the previous derivation of the dynamics predicted by this model, and use the model to estimate relevant biological parameters from SIV rebound data. We confirm a previously described effect of very early antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation on the rate of recrudescence and the viral load growth rate after treatment interruption. We find that every day ART initiation is delayed results in a 39% increase in the recrudescence rate (95% credible interval: [18%, 62%]), and a 11% decrease of the viral growth rate (95% credible interval: [4%, 20%]). We show that when viral rebound occurs early relative to the viral load doubling time, a model with multiple successful reactivation events fits the data better than a model with only a single successful reactivation event.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere1008241
JournalPLoS computational biology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Ecology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


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