Cluster of differentiation (CD) antigens are expressed on cells of myeloid and lymphoid lineages. As most disease processes involve immune system activation or suppression, these antigens offer unique opportunities for monitoring host responses. Immunophenotyping using limited numbers of CD antigens enables differentiation states of immune system cells to be determined. Extended phenotyping involving parallel measurement of multiple CD antigens may help identify expression pattern signatures associated with specific disease states. To explore this possibility we have made a CD monoclonal antibody array and scanner, enabling the parallel immunophenotyping of leukocyte cell suspensions in a single and rapid analysis. To demonstrate this approach, we used the specific example of patients infected with human immunodeficiency virus type-1 (HIV-1). An invariant HIV-induced CD antigen signature has been defined that is both robust and independent of clinical outcome, composed of a unique profile of CD antigen expression levels that are both increased and decreased relative to internal controls. The results indicate that HIV-induced changes in CD antigen expression are disease specific and independent of outcome. Their invariant nature indicates an irreversible component to retroviral infection and suggests the utility of CD antigen expression patterns in other disease settings.