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Researchers Confirm First Documented Case Of HIV Remission In A Child

aids hiv scientistsEvery day we’re one step closer to eradicating HIV forever. Now that may sound crazy but we now have HIV prevention medication (and every gay and bisexual man should be on it), a forthcoming HIV vaccine, and now researchers have published a report they say confirms the first documented case of HIV remission in a child.

“Our findings suggest that this child’s remission is not a mere fluke but the likely result of aggressive and very early therapy that may have prevented the virus from taking a hold in the child’s immune cells,” says Deborah Persaud, M.D., lead author of the NEJM report and a virologist and pediatric HIV expert at the Johns Hopkins Children’s Center.

According to a release from Johns Hopkins:

The child was born to an HIV-infected mother and began combination anti-retroviral treatment 30 hours after birth. A series of tests in the subsequent days and weeks showed progressively diminishing viral presence in the infant’s blood, until it reached undetectable levels 29 days after birth. The infant remained on antivirals until 18 months of age, at which point the child was lost to follow-up for a while and, physicians say, stopped treatment. Upon return to care, about 10 months after treatment stopped, the child underwent repeated standard HIV tests, none of which detected virus in the blood, according to the report.

The child’s experience, the authors of the report say, provides compelling evidence that HIV-infected infants can achieve viral remission if anti-retroviral therapy begins within hours or days of infection. As a result, a federally funded study set to begin in early 2014 will test the early-treatment method used in the Mississippi case to determine whether the approach could be used in all HIV-infected newborns.

The three-year-old Mississippi patient was the first child to be “functionally cured” of HIV after undergoing unusually early treatment with antiretroviral drugs. This marks the second documented case of HIV remission, and was the first case involving a child. We’re thankful the child is doing well, and hopeful for what this means for all of us in the future.

By:           Damien Basile
On:           Nov 1, 2013
Tagged: , , ,

  • 9 Comments
    • jimdandy1984
      jimdandy1984

      This story is a little misleading. The virus could still return from latency. Also, I think it’s kind of ridiculous to say that every gay man should be on truvada. Do you have any idea how that medication damages your body. I’ll practice safely for now thanks and maybe at some point down the line, there will be an actual “cure.” Still, go science!

      Nov 1, 2013 at 10:22 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • MikeE
      MikeE

      It’s very nice that they were able to cure this baby… but unfortunately, the same treatment won’t work on an adult who is already infected. I really do hope they find something to treat the countless adults who are infected, although curing babies makes for better news copy.

      Nov 1, 2013 at 12:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Paul F
      Paul F

      They’re even making strides on the latency issue. They’ve found the chemical/biological triggers that cause the dormant virus to activate. Once the active virus is beaten down to non-detectable levels, then they’ll activate the dormant reservoirs to wipe out the newly “hatched” viruses. What’s holding things back is that each mutation requires a specifically matched protein to block it’s replication. Use the “wrong” protein and you get multiplication of a new subset. Phys.org has had many articles that cover advances in HIV research and do a greater service of coverage than my paraphrasing here. The day is coming, but there is no ONE cure as there is no “one” HIV virus.

      Nov 1, 2013 at 12:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Red_Dragon_888
      Red_Dragon_888

      Sounds like somebody is trying to boost corporate profits with this tale of wonder.

      Nov 1, 2013 at 2:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • dirknerd
      dirknerd

      Pretty scary to realize that microbial life is at the top of the food chain. I can understand germaphobes. I’ve been HIV poz since 1985 or 6 fortunate that my genotype is the least virulent strain and has yet to mutate. I do wish that there was a way to get rid of it all together. SIGH!!!! : (

      Nov 1, 2013 at 2:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • DonW
      DonW

      @jimdandy1984: “Every gay and bisexual man” should be on PrEP — sounds like a dream for Big Pharma. Knowing Queerty’s track record of wh*ring out its editorial content to corporate interests, I wouldn’t be surprised if they were on the take from Gilead, the multi-billion-dollar maker of Truvada.

      Nov 1, 2013 at 3:24 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • MikeE
      MikeE

      I have NO idea why the comment I just posted got flagged by Queerty’s system. I honestly cannot see a single word in my completely innocent comment that could have triggered an alarm.

      honestly, come on Queerty, you really need to do something about your spam filters.

      Nov 1, 2013 at 4:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • viveutvivas
      viveutvivas

      A generic for Truvada manufactured by Cipla is available for a fraction of the price, so expense does not have to be a problem if the political will is there to prevent infections.

      There have been a few remissions also in adults who were started on antivirals quickly after infection. These were reported on recently. SO it appears the secret behind eradication for now is to catch the infection early.

      Nov 4, 2013 at 4:36 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • viveutvivas
      viveutvivas

      A generic for Truvada is already available overseas for a fraction of the price, so expense does not have to be a problem if the political will is there to prevent infections.

      There have been a few remissions also in adults who were started on antivirals quickly after infection. These were reported on recently. SO it appears the secret behind eradication for now is to catch the infection early.

      Nov 4, 2013 at 4:38 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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