Twelve years after a first patient was identified as cured of H.I.V., the virus that causes AIDS, a second patient undergoing similar treatment was diagnosed as in long-term remission, according to a New York Times report citing an article in to be published tomorrow in the journal Nature.
The report means that a cure for the disease is possible, but several obstacles remain before it can be developed and applied broadly, according to scientists quoted by the Times.
The findings are set to be presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in Seattle, on Tuesday.
The successful treatment involved bone-marrow transplants that were given to patients infected with H.I.V. However, the transplants were meant to treat the patients’ cancer — not the virus.
Because of the risks and side-effects associated with bone marrow transplants, using the treatment broadly as a cure for H.I.V. likely isn’t a possibility, and drugs are available to control the infection.
What scientists find promising is the potential to replace infected cells with immune cells modified to resist H.I.V.
Speaking to The Times, Dr. Annemarie Wensing, a virologist at the University Medical Center, Utrecht, in the Netherlands said, “This will inspire people that the cure is not …read more
Source: Tech Crunch