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Calimmune: Safety Study of a Dual Anti-HIV Gene Transfer Construct to Treat HIV-

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Well things are always changing it seems, so maybe what I wrote is just the conservative estimated schedule.   I wouldn't be surprised if Group 2 ends up happening sooner rather than later if Group 1 goes better/smoother than expected.  The wait begins.  I hope the Group 1 data is shared right away, or a Group 1 person chimes in on here. (or if anyone else hears an update they can share)

There was a poster by the Calimmune people presented at CROI this year.
I think it hasn't been posted yet in this thread. Here is the abstract:

Looking good


--- Quote from: Dr.Strangelove on May 03, 2013, 12:15:27 AM ---There was a poster by the Calimmune people presented at CROI this year.
I think it hasn't been posted yet in this thread. Here is the abstract:

Looking good

--- End quote ---

Interesting, I only wish I had the medical training to understand every nuance of that page.   I get the gist of it though.

They said:
"Conclusions: These data provide proof of principle that shRNA targeting HIV-1 promoter is able to suppress HIV-1 replication"

I know they have to  be careful which words they pick, but I'm hoping "suppress" is to the point of the virus being eliminated over time.    Do we know if these humanized mice will be monitored long term? (assuming the humanized mice live very long to begin with)    I wonder what length of time a mouse would need to remain undetectable to be considered a functional cure and finally a cure cure.  (again assuming they live for very long to begin with)      Google said a wild mouse only lives less than a year!

Interesting stuff,  I'm looking forward to finding out how real humans respond long term. 
(assuming the short term goes as well, one step at a time)

I just had an interesting discovery.    Anyone that volunteers for a clinical trial that has you STOP your ART (such as Calimmune) might actually be doing TWO experiments.  Check this out.

Topic: Early HIV drugs 'functionally cure about one in 10'

Here's where I possibly come in:

Here's a copy and paste:

--- Quote from: skycee on March 16, 2013, 03:10:56 AM ---Post-treatment controllers tended to have very high viral loads soon after infection, while elite controllers are more likely to keep virus levels down, even at the start, the researchers said. The immune systems of the post-treatment controllers also tended to differ in certain ways from those of elite controllers.

--- End quote ---

Maybe I'll end up as a post controller?   I actually have a potential situation where I'll be able to find out in several months.  (I'll post my results if/when it happens)

I was diagnosed early 2012.   I had a pretty bad flu for 3 weeks so I got tested.  They told me I had a VL of 2 million, but still tested negative for antibodies.  (they have a dual HIV test at the clinic I went to)  So that means I caught it about as early as it gets.

I did research and I jumped into a clinical trial of a new CC5 blocking med:  (with Truvada)
(when I started, I felt normal, and VL was pretty low naturally)
I became undetectable in several weeks. (and zero side effects)

I just completed the cenicriviroc trial and switched to complera a month ago. (again zero side effects)

The next trial I'm on the top of the list to participate in Arm 2 or 3 of the Calimmune Gene transfer trial.

Here's the interesting part.........

I need to STOP taking my meds several weeks before I get treated via Calimmune.    I never imagined that I might remain undetectable after I stop ART.  I'll have been on ART nearly 2 years by the time they would want me.   The fact I was on the CCR5 blocking cenicriviroc for so long and started so early gives me a decent chance at least.   I was told I was the healthiest patient in every program they have across the board too.   So pending my qualification for Calimmune, and they call me,  I'll consider it a double experiment!

I'm pretty sure I was told the Calimmune trial requires you to actually have a detectable VL before they'll treat you.    What if I remain UD month after month?  I would imagine they want test groups to be detectable so they can rule out the potential Post-treatment controller anomalies


There was another "cure" post today that got me thinking.    Here's the one I'm referring to.

Topic: Two reported cured of HIV in Kenya?

First off, it's hard to say if this is even legit, but what the article talks about still generated questions.

--- Quote ---“I have demonstrated the HIV cure in two people by stopping rapid multiplication of CD4 progenitor cells in the bone marrow, where the HIV virus hides (to avoid) elimination by the immune system and thus achieved the first complete cure without bone marrow transplantation,” Dr Barasa said.

His treatment, he says, is based on the world’s first known cure of HIV, that of Timothy Ray Brown, 47, who was diagnosed with HIV in 1995 and put on ARVs, but in 2006 developed leukaemia (blood cancer) and, for this reason, was given a bone marrow transplant with a rare gene mutation that provides natural resistance to HIV.

His doctor, Gero Hutter, said this resistance seemed to have been transferred to Brown, but Dr Barasa says this was not the case, arguing that the removal of Brown’s bone marrow did it

“Removing the bone marrow, where the CD4 cells replicate, denied the virus the capacity to replicate and consequently the patient was free of HIV,” says Dr Barasa. Since the new bone marrow was resistant to the virus, the already existing bugs in circulation and from the secondary reservoirs — which include the brain, glands, intestines, and skin — could not create new hideouts, hence the ultimate eradication of the virus.
--- End quote ---

So again, assuming this story is even legit, I wonder if what his Theory on what REALLY happened with Timothy Brown (Berlin Patient) is true?  If you read about the new claimed cure worked, He's basically saying you only need to use Methotrexate to reset someones immune system deep enough to flush out the HIV reserves.   A full Stem Cell transplant isn't' required.

--- Quote ---Medical doctors using antiretrovirals are able to bring down a patient’s viral load to undetectable levels, but once the patient stops the medication, the viral load goes up again.

“This means there is a reservoir in the body where the virus is hiding and where the ARVs are not able to reach. The hideout is in some parts of the bone marrow. Get rid of this reservoir and, theoretically, you are home and dry,” Dr Barasa says, adding that he has achieved this using a method that comprises the use of a cancer drug (methotraxate) in combination with other agents. Two patients who have undergone the therapy, Dr Barasa adds, have shown no signs of the virus for the past six months.

Methotrexate is used to treat cancer but is indicated to have very serious side effects and should not be used without advice from a competent physician.

“Although the drug is available in local pharmacies on prescription, it must never be used without clear instruction from your doctors,” says Dr Barasa.
--- End quote ---

How does Methotrexate compare to Busulfan for pre-conditioning?

So again if the Methotrexate did somehow work, I'm assuming you wouldn't be immune from getting re-infected with HIV again.   At least with Calimmune you hopefully permanently block CCR5 and CSCR4 entries and gain partial/full immunity after the potential "cure"

2013 is very interesting so far.


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