UK patient second in world to be 'cured' of HIV

UK patient second in world to be 'cured' of HIV

UK patient second in world to be 'cured' of HIV

The scientists are describing the case as a long-term remission publically, while most experts are calling it a cure, the paper reported. "Some of them are directly related to the Berlin patient and work with transplantation: for example, gene modification therapy". The "Berlin patient", who was later identified as Timothy Ray Brown, had leukemia and wasn't responding to chemotherapy.

"For hepatitis C, we can completely cure people of the virus so they're no longer infected. HIV is like high blood pressure; we can control the symptoms, but we can't remove the cause".

The Berlin patient's cure was one of magnificent serendipity. "I would much rather be on one pill a day with relatively little toxicity than risk a bone marrow transplant so I don't have to take one pill a day". The donated cells, with their ability to fight HIV, have now taken root in Brown's body.

Specialists said it was not yet clear whether the CCR5 resistance is the only key - or whether the graft-versus-host disease may have been just as important. In both instances, the patients received a bone marrow transplant to treat cancer. Then, in 2012 the unidentified patient was diagnosed with a cancer, Hodgkin lymphoma. Following multiple transplants and a slew of immunosuppressive drugs, Brown was placed into an induced coma and almost died before he eventually recovered and was cured.

Now, an global team of scientists led by Ravindra Gupta, a virologist at the University College London, reports a second patient has been in remission for three years following a similar procedure.

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The patient remained on ARV for 16 months after the transplant, at which point the clinical team and the patient made a decision to interrupt ARV therapy to test if the patient was truly in HIV-1 remission.

Dr Anthony Fauci, head of the HIV/AIDS division at the National Institutes of Health, told the Daily Mail, we shouldn't expect this type of treatment to become the stock standard for people wanting a cure. He was treated with anti-retroviral drugs until about 18 months ago.

A second person has experienced sustained remission from HIV-1, according to a case study to be published Tuesday in the journal Nature.

"Medications used to be much more hard and have higher side effects", says Dr. Rosenthal.

Usually, HIV patients expect to stay on daily pills for life to suppress the virus. True, HIV has disappeared from their patient but he will obviously remain under observation for many more months.

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The patient voluntarily stopped taking HIV drugs to see if the virus would come back.

But in the case of the London patient, the treatment worked.

"Its effectiveness underlines the importance of developing new strategies based on preventing CCR5 expression", said co-author Ian Gabriel, of the Imperial College NHS Trust. "We can't completely eradicate everyone's immune systems and this, in and of itself, is not a suggested mechanism for curing HIV".

Get push notifications with news, features and more. In Brown's case, he had leukaemia and was in need of bone-marrow transplants since his chemotherapy was failing him.

A man in Britain has become the second known adult worldwide to be cleared of the virus after he received a bone marrow transplant from an HIV-resistant donor, his doctors said. The interaction may have helped destroy some of the HIV infection in the patients, Gupta says.

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