I thought I would use this post to update you readers on some news articles I've come across the past week. A lot of them had to do with finding a cure! It seems like the 30th anniversary of the discovery of HIV/AIDS has really ignited a fire in the medical community to focus on finding a cure. A research center in Seattle recently received a $5 million grant and is hoping to start human clinical trials in five years. Their main focus is on the "Berlin patient" incident which I had blogged about earlier. A man from Berlin who was both HIV positive and a leukemia patient received a bone marrow transplant from someone who had the rare delta 32 mutation which is immune to HIV. The patient is now both leukemia and HIV free. The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center is hoping to find a way to replicate this mutation, modify stem cells and find a way to attack the HIV "reservoirs" which make this virus so complicated and difficult to cure. The "reservoirs" refer to the dormancy of the virus. Controlling the virus with ART does not eliminate it and "pockets" of the virus remain in the persons system. Researchers from Johns Hopkins are receiving $32 million in funding to find out more about these reservoirs of HIV. A conference by the International AIDS Society will take place in Rome next week and I hope to find out more about what is discussed and blog about it!
Here are the links to the articles if you'd like to read them in their entirety: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2015589038_hivcure13m.html
Also--I will be picking up the medicine bottles tomorrow to get started on the Nelson Mandela Day Fundraiser. If you'd like to participate please let me know!!!