Nineteen adult movie performers have been removed from a voluntary quarantine list almost a month earlier than expected following an HIV outbreak (search) that shook the multibillion dollar porn industry and halted most film production, a nonprofit medical group announced Tuesday.

At least five performers have tested positive for the virus that causes AIDS since actor Darren James apparently acquired it in March while shooting a movie in Brazil (search), health officials said. One of those cases, however, involved a transsexual actor whose case was unrelated to the others.

About 50 people who performed with either James or those he worked with him have been on a voluntary quarantine list that effectively prevented them from doing sex scenes. About 30 film companies -- most in the San Fernando Valley -- have temporarily halted production.

Those removed from the quarantine list Tuesday have been cleared to resume working in the industry, said Sharon Mitchell, executive director of the Adult Industry Movie Healthcare Foundation (search), which provides testing for sexually transmitted diseases for adult performers.

Performers were initially told they would have to wait to resume work until at least June. Healthcare officials are now confident that the 19 performers are not HIV positive, Mitchell said

"We are very certain that these people are free of the HIV virus," she said.

All 19 performers have waited 30 to 45 days from the date of exposure and have been tested at least twice, some as many as five times, by at least six different testing methods.

Film producer Nicole London of Outback Productions said she and others in the industry were surprised and a little skeptical of the news after being told repeatedly that exposed performers would have to wait 60 days to ensure the accuracy of test results.

"We weren't expecting this so soon," she said. "I'm not going to resume shooting. We were told 60 days and I'm gonna stick to that."

The standard 60-day waiting period is usually applied when only one testing method is used, Mitchell said. She added that she and other healthcare officials met with microbiology specialists on HIV who confirmed the 19 performers had undergone sufficient testing and could be released from quarantine.

"It's our reputation on the line," Mitchell said. "We would not release these people if we didn't feel it was the safe and cautious thing to do."