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My 25th anniversary/ new numbers

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OzPaul:
Hi Everyone

25 years ago this week ( 1981) I was a young ballet dancer living in NYC. I was passionate about my career and dance was in many ways my life. I fell very ill that week, high fevers, weight loss, aching etc. After a couple of weeks it passed and I was lovingly been nurtured back to health by Tim, a new boyfriend. Slowly I put back on the weight I had lost and I was  back leaping and pirouetting.

As it turned out that was likely the week I become poz (I tested poz in 85 when a first test first became available). It has been for many of us a harrowing time, scary, tragic, grief filled and for a spare few, miraculous. I count my many blessings that I am one of those miracles. During the 80's and 90's I waited for the other shoe to drop. The Grim Reaper seemed to darken my door. Yet I thrived, why ? I asked my GP about others and he had heard of some. I wanted to take part in studies yet there seemed to be none.

Last year I was told about Bruce Walker MD at Harvard who was conducting a study on Long Term Non Progressors (LTNP's). At last I thought I could perhaps be of service to a community I had so much (yet not) in common with.

I am now enrolled in 4 studies both here in the USA and Australia, my home. I  have a new dedication in my life ( I left dancing behind many years ago), helping researchers discover the reason why we LTNP's are so well for so long and if there in may lie a vaccine or cure. I participate in these studies for all my brothers and sisters around the globe, in hopes that one day we may all be HIV free or at least escape it's wrath. Also here at AM is Zephyr who is likewise passionate in her quest as an LTNP to help find answers. Zephy and I are what is termed by Bruce Walker as "elite controllers" a subset of LTNP's. We became acquainted through the Harvard study and have since become great e-mail/phone friends . Next Wednesday she and I will meet in Bethesda at the NIH for their LTNP protocols !!! We are kindred spirits along the same path. I believe we may also have a couple of other LTNP's in our AM family who are involved in research too.

I got back from Harvard last week for my second round of blood donations for that LTNP study.
My preliminary results are CD4's at 750 and % at 40. My percentage remains stable while CD 4's vary quite a bit.
I am speechless on that but thank God everyday.

If you are or may know of someone who is an LTNP here is a link to the Harvard study. They are actively seeking study participants.

http://www.mgh.harvard.edu/aids/hiv_elite_controllers.asp

I am deeply moved by the stories of courage, strength and spirit here at Aids Meds. I feel as though I have come home at last.

Peace and Love
Paul  (formerly known as chefpaul)

OzPaul:
OOPS,

I forgot the biggie which is an undectable viral load.

Paul

Markmt:
Hi Paul, Congratulations on your great numbers. That is just amazing. People like Zephyr and yourself may unlock the secret of new ways how to fight off this virus. Its good that scientists are taking interest in your cases. You are a blessing for all of us and you bring about alot of hope.Thank you for your on going coperation and keeping us posted.

Peace and Love to you,

mark

Sdgirl:
Paul,

As I have said before on other threads, pioneers like you and Zephyr are the ones that will help to discover a cure for this virus.  Your strength, courage and tenacity to be the "human guinea pigs" is outstanding.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for making it possible for me and others like me to look forward to a future without HIV.  However I am able to support you, I am here.

xoxo

Lisa   :-*

JohnOso:
Ditto to all of the above for me too, Paul.

I find your respectives cases very fascinating, and I thank you (and Zeph) from the bottom of my heart for your participation in finding a cure.

Take care (and much respect),
John

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