Phase I of HIV infection is called the asymptomatic stage, because there are few or no symptoms. However, the amount of virus increases due to replication, as shown in Figure 47-11. The immune system begins an attack, and plasma cells make antibodies to fight the virus. However, it may take several weeks for the amount of anti-HIV antibodies to become large enough to result in a positive HIV test. HIV-infected people may feel well during phase I but can still infect other people. Phase I can last for up to 10 years or more.
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