Simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) infection of nonhuman primates is one of the most relevant animals models of HIV infection in humans. To test a potential anti-HIV gene therapy strategy in this model, CD4-enriched lymphocytes from three rhesus macaques were subjected to retrovirally mediated gene transfer with a vector expressing an antisense tat/rev gene. This group of animals and three control macaques were subsequently infected with SIV(mac239). Blood and lymph nodes from all macaques were sampled for more than a year to monitor the progress of infection. Although all animals became infected, the animals that received the lymphocytes engineered with the antisense vector demonstrated a significant reduction in viral load in both peripheral blood and lymph nodes, had sustained numbers of CD4+ cells, and exhibited little disruption of lymph node architecture.