Drugs can stop HIV from progressing, but until now researchers have been stumped in their efforts to eradicate the deadly virus.
Now a team of researchers from VGTI Florida and the University of Montreal say that they have identified subsets of memory T-cells where the virus can linger, hidden within the body's immune system. And HIV replicates itself in the T-cells through cell division, a completely different replication process that takes place in other cells. New drugs can be developed to stop both mechanisms, they say, offering a new research avenue that can ultimately defeat HIV.
"Based on this research, we believe one possible method for eliminating HIV in the body is to use a combined approach," Rafick-Pierre Sékaly, Ph.D., current scientific director for VGTI Florida. "We propose the use of medications that target viral replication of HIV throughout the body, in combination with drugs that prevent infected memory T-cells from dividing. We believe that by attacking the disease in these distinct two ways at once for an extended period of time, we can eliminate the reservoirs of HIV that currently persist within the human body, leaving an individual disease-free."
- read the press release