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  1. #1
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    Cure for HIV Found

    http://nymag.com/print/?/health/feat...s-cure-2011-6/

    It appears a cure for HIV has been found. A man diagnosed with HIV in 1995 now has no traces of the disease after undergoing stem cell treatment.

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    This has been news for awhile, but unfortunately it is only a "cure" for an incredibly select few people. The donor was one of a minute group of people who have genetic resistance to the HIV virus. When his stem cells were harvested and put into Brown, he was able to use the donor's immunity to stop his body from reproducing the HIV virus.

    It is a huge step forward, but it is a a very risky procedure, given that you are incredibly immuno-compromised when undergoing stem cell transplants, on top of being HIV+.

    And unfortunately, its very very expensive, and right now, globally, the poorest are more often that not those stricken with the disease.

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    It's still a step in the right direction though. I think it's a good argument for stem cell research, although I know it's an ethically debatable area. I'm glad they've made a step forward at least.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes. Make sure it's worth watching.

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    It seems that it worked in one very specific case. I wouldn't go as far as calling it a cure in a thread title.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    The next steps to make it more widely available:
    A stem-cell transplant from an unrelated donor can cost $250,000 and is a reasonable risk only in the face of imminent death. What cured Timothy Brown is obviously not a cure for the rest of the world. But it is proof of concept, and it has jolted AIDS-cure research back to life. Sometimes science follows sentiment; the abandonment of cure research after the disillusion of the nineties is now playing out in reverse.

    For Brown’s cure to be relevant on a wide scale, it would have to be possible to create the delta 32 mutation without a donor and without a transplant—preferably in the form of a single injection. As it happens, progress toward that goal has already begun, in the laboratory of Paula Cannon at the University of Southern California. Instead of a donor, Cannon is using a new form of gene editing known as zinc finger nucleases, developed by the California company Sangamo BioSciences. Zinc finger nucleases are synthetic proteins that act as genetic scissors. They can target and snip a specific part of the genetic blueprint: They can, for instance, cut out the code that produces the CCR5 receptor, yielding a cell with HIV resistance.

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    What cured Timothy Brown is obviously not a cure for the rest of the world. But it is proof of concept, and it has jolted AIDS-cure research back to life.
    Obviously, this is great. A great start that is, not the finish line.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    It seems that it worked in one very specific case. I wouldn't go as far as calling it a cure in a thread title.
    Eys, I got more excited than I should have. Can we change the title?

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    I just hope that this can serve the anti-stem cell people a nice hot cup of STFU.
    Gun Control is like trying to reduce drunk driving by making it tougher for sober people to buy cars.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    It seems that it worked in one very specific case. I wouldn't go as far as calling it a cure in a thread title.
    Yeah, I had emotional whiplash between the first and second posts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyn View Post
    I just hope that this can serve the anti-stem cell people a nice hot cup of STFU.
    ITA.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyn View Post
    I just hope that this can serve the anti-stem cell people a nice hot cup of STFU.
    Me too.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    The cure of the man diagnosed in 1995 represents a proof of principle, that HIV can be cure and therefore not only gives hope to a lot of people but have open the door for researching and investing in this area.

    There are at the moment several protocols being tried not just only the one posted by agalisv. Some of them are focusing on waking up the CD4 T cells that are in special reservoirs in the body and that contain the virus so they can be targeted with anti-HIV drugs. They are using already approved FDA-drugs and they are hoping to get these new therapies to be out to the public in not much time, if there are shown to be helpful in reducing the pool of dormant T cells and latent virus.

    If you want more information, there was an excellent News Focus on Science magazine a couple of week ago and it was written in a very accessible way and although is not open access, you may be able to get it through a friend or a library?
    http://www.sciencemag.org/content/332/6031/784.summary
    Also, at the Science site you can find related information on their ScienceNow section which I think is open access...

    Sadly, I do not think that this specific cure has much to do with the controversy with embryonic stem-cell therapy as we are talking about adult bone marrow stem cells.

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    I'm wondering, since HIV is a virus, has the virus mutated or will it mutate to nullify this "cure"?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gazpacho View Post
    I'm wondering, since HIV is a virus, has the virus mutated or will it mutate to nullify this "cure"?
    It most certainly can. It's a danger for many vaccines and treatments, obviously.

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    Can a mod PLEASE change the thread title. Wowsers. Perhaps something like: "A step toward an HIV cure."

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    I second the request. My heart made a jump when I saw the thread title but the excitement was cooled considerably. While this is an important step, the thread title is rather sensationalistic IMO.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 06-05-2011 at 07:08 AM.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    Methinks some are confusing a cure with something being mass marketed. It was big news when a polio vaccine was discovered, but it took several years before it was made widely available. Didn't negate the importance of the initial vaccine discovery though.

    Wrt viral mutations, there are already different viral types of HIV. Mon can correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe this cure is for Hiv-1.

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    I wouldn't say the discovery of the vaccine is the same as this case. What happened here is a first step in a long road toward a cure for HIV. This isn't about making it widely available as it wouldn't be effective with a great number, if not the majority of HIV patients. It's about developing this to be safe and effective for most. And that is problematic at this point for several reasons, distribution just being one of them. Not so with the polio vaccine.

    Do you honestly think that I, for instance who worked in medical research for years, would be confusing mass availability with a cure? Other posters who find the thread title problematic seem to be very competent on the topic as well. Far more competent than the OP, in fact.

    It appears that it is you, agalisgv who do not understand the nature of this case and missed the part in your link that stated this is not a cure for the rest of the world. This is a very specific case, as stated previously. You also quote a process of development of gene editing that is currently in its beginning stages. Biomedical research is a very long road and we are not at the finish line yet.

    Once it goes through all the stages of clinical trials and passes muster in all the usual ways, then we can talk about a cure and only then, mass distribution. What we have now is a case study where n=1.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 06-06-2011 at 04:32 AM.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Do you honestly think that I, for instance who worked in medical research for years, would be confusing mass availability with a cure?
    yes

    And frankly I'm tired of you ruining threads with your personal obsession with me. Get over it and stfu.

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    You need to chill.

    And realize that I may have interest in the topic and not in you and also that other posters who understand this topic better than you, happen to agree that calling this thread "HIV cure found" is premature.

    Seems to me you have a real problem admitting that you are wrong and lash out at people who point out that you could be wrong. You don't understand how biomedical research works and you've demonstrated this many a time. That's OK. It's impossible to understand everything just from Googling a few things. A little humility, please.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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