A man in London has been reportedly cured of HIV

On World AIDS Day 2018 in Kolkata. ‘London Patient’ has brought excitement but a cure for HIV is still some distance away

On World AIDS Day 2018 in Kolkata. ‘London Patient’ has brought excitement but a cure for HIV is still some distance away

The "London Patient" is only the second person known to have shaken off the HIV virus during a 40-year AIDS epidemic that has infected 70 million people.

Doctors in Britain said on Monday that the HIV-positive man had been cleared after he received a bone marrow transplant from an HIV-resistant donor.

According to reports, the patient is only the second person ever reported to have been cleared of the virus using this method.

Bone marrow transplants are inherently risky and are considered a last resort treatment, so it is unlikely they could be used en masse to treat HIV patients.

The male London patient was diagnosed with HIV in 2003 and advanced Hodgkin's lymphoma in 2012.

He underwent a so-called haematopoietic stem cell transplant in 2016 from a donor with two copies of a CCR5 gene variant, a combination carried by about one percent of the world population.

Any story about an HIV cure is bound to stir excitement.

Both his cancer and HIV went into remission, and 18 months on, he is no longer taking HIV drugs and all traces of infection have become undetectable, according to doctors treating him. Prof Ravindra Gupta cited the unethical research by the Chinese scientist where he created designer babies with the CCR5 gene-editing to make them immune to HIV.

The vast majority of people living with HIV are located in low- and middle- income countries, with an estimated 66% living in sub-Saharan Africa. Chemotherapy can be effective at fighting HIV because it kills dividing cells. But she said his was also an unusual circumstance. and that the treatment is not practical for her patients with HIV.

United Kingdom police blow up parcel device sent to Scottish university
All were A4-sized white postal bags containing yellow Jiffy bags and appeared capable of igniting a small fire when opened. Police said they carried out a "controlled explosion of the device".

Globally, 36.9 million people were living with HIV in 2017.

But replacing immune cells with those that do not have the CCR5 receptor appears to be key in preventing HIV from rebounding after the treatment. Notable differences were that the Berlin Patient was given two transplants, and underwent total body irradiation, while the United Kingdom patient received just one transplant and less intensive chemotherapy.

A second person is in sustained remission from HIV-1, the virus that causes AIDS, after ceasing treatment and is likely cured, researchers were set to announce at a medical conference Tuesday. In people who have the CCR5 mutation, the virus is unable to enter cells and thus can not cause infection.

"I did not want to be the only person in the world cured of HIV", Brown wrote in a medical journal in 2015, explaining why he chose to reveal his identity.

A poster presented at CROI described another case of long-term HIV remission after a stem cell transplant from a donor with a double CCR5-delta-32 mutation.

He added that both the Berlin and London patients had this complication, which could have played a role in the loss of HIV-infected cells. "The hope is that this will eventually lead to a safe, cost-effective and easy strategy to achieve these results using gene technology or antibody techniques".

The new patient, who was treated...

"The breakthrough gives us great hope for the future, but also shows how far we are from the point of ending AIDS with science, as well as the absolute importance to continue to focus on HIV prevention and treatment efforts", he said.

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