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Cytokines/chemokines play key roles in modulating disease progression in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Although it is known that early HIV-1 infection is associated with increased production of proinflammatory cytokines, the relationship between cytokine levels and HIV-1 pathogenesis is not clear. The concentrations of 18 cytokines/chemokines in 30 HIV-1 negative and 208 HIV-1 positive plasma samples from Korean patients were measured by the Luminex system. Early HIV-1 infection was classified according to the Fiebig stage (FS) based on the characteristics of the patients infected with HIV-1. Concentrations of interleukin-12 (IL-12), interferon-inducible protein-10 (IP-10), macrophage inflammatory protein-1α (MIP-1α) and regulated upon activation, normal T cells expressed and secreted (RANTES) were increased significantly during the early stage of HIV-1 infection (FS II–IV) compared with the HIV-1-negative group. Of these cytokines, an elevated level of IP-10 was the only factor to be correlated positively with a higher viral load during the early stages of HIV-1 infection (FS II–IV) in Koreans (R = 0.52, P < 0.0005). Therefore, these results suggest that IP-10 may be an indicator for HIV-1 viremia and associated closely with viral replication in patients with early HIV-1 infection. J. Med. Virol. 87:782–789, 2015. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.