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Bone Marrow Removal Shows Promise In Removing HIV

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Good to hear more people getting 'cured'. I wonder if the CCR5-Delta32 in Tim's case was really necessary (and sufficient?) to cure him. It could have been the chemotherapy.

--- Quote ---Brown was given stem cells that were predisposed to resist HIV infection, because the donor happened to have a mutated version of a key protein — CCR5 — that is needed for HIV to infect cells. So Brown’s transplant was akin to gene therapy with HIV-resistant cells.

But the Boston patients received stem cells without the protective mutation. The transplanted cells must therefore have been protected from infection by the antiretroviral drugs taken during cancer treatment. Their doctors think that an immune response called graft-versus-host disease — a post-transplant reaction in which donated cells kill off a patient’s own cells — may have then wiped out the patients’ HIV reservoirs, potentially curing the men.
--- End quote ---


Some have beat me to it on here already, and we don't want to get too excited yet, but it seems there may be some hope about curing HIV/removing it from the blood via bone marrow transplant. The virus lives in the blood so it does make sense that if all blood is removed and transplanted, the virus does not return. Hopefully, scientists will find a way to do this without the extreme of a bone marrow transplant, as that is an extreme case, and this information was essentially found by accident, as the men involved in this story had cancer and happened to have HIV as well, and they found that the HIV has not returned to their bodies as of yet. Hopefully this will give research a whole new avenue to pursue, there have been so many false hopes over the years, I hope there's something to this. The meds we have today are great, but nobody wants to be on anti-retroviral meds their whole life, a cure is the ideal situation. I am an optimist and hope this is one small ray of hope we can hold onto for the future.

Another man from Rmany, a 67 year old man who started HIV treatment shortly after diagnosis (within three months) his viral load was over one million at the time and cd4 count just under five hundred.

He started treatment right away with AZT, 3tc, and efavirenz.  It's believed that since he was able to start treatment so soon after seroconversion he was ale to control the virus.

There was also info presented at IAS about two from Boston who may be "cured" after receiving a stem cell transplant.  This news has been reported previously however, the last time it was reported they were still on HAART.  They have stopped HAART and are still maintaining viral control. 

Lots of cure reports at IAS this year, that's a bit coo!


--- Quote from: buginme2 on July 03, 2013, 11:45:24 AM ---Lots of cure reports at IAS this year, that's a bit coo!

--- End quote ---

The news over the last year has been amazing - we have gone from one person to nineteen cured or at least in remission (not counting Dr. Basara's patients, yet...) within a very short period of time.  Perhaps we'll need a "counter" on the front page of to track the number of people cured or in remission.

In reading the IAS news I am also struck by how sensitive all of the reports are to not blow any of the results out of proportion -- all of them that I have read point out that we still have a very long way to go.  There is clearly an attempt to keep the media from going overboard, which is good.


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