Connect with us


Scientists say they have killed HIV in cells



Scientists say they have successfully eliminated HIV from infected cells, using Nobel Prize-winning Crispr gene-editing technology.

Working like scissors, but at the molecular level, it cuts DNA so “bad” bits can be removed or inactivated.

The hope is to ultimately be able to rid the body entirely of the virus, although much more work is needed to check it would be safe and effective.

Existing HIV medicines can stop the virus but not eliminate it.

The University of Amsterdam team, presenting a synopsis, or abstract, of their early findings at a medical conference this week, stress their work remains merely “proof of concept” and will not become a cure for HIV any time soon.

And Dr James Dixon, stem-cell and gene-therapy technologies associate professor at the University of Nottingham, agrees, saying the full findings still require scrutiny.

“Much more work will be needed to demonstrate results in these cell assays can happen in an entire body for a future therapy,” he said.

“There will be much more development needed before this could have impact on those with HIV.”

‘Extremely challenging’

Other scientists are also trying to use Crispr against HIV.

And Excision BioTherapeutics says after 48 weeks, three volunteers with HIV have no serious side effects.

But Dr Jonathan Stoye, a virus expert at the Francis Crick Institute, in London, said removing HIV from all the cells that might harbour it in the body was “extremely challenging”.

“Off-target effects of the treatment, with possible long-term side effects, remain a concern,” he said.

“It therefore seems likely that many years will elapse before any such Crispr-based therapy becomes routine – even assuming that it can be shown to be effective.”

See also  Job Losses, Factory Closures Loom As Unsold Goods Pile Up — MAN

HIV infects and attacks immune-system cells, using their own machinery to make copies of itself.

Even with effective treatment, some go into a resting, or latent, state – so they still contain the DNA, or genetic material, of HIV, even if not actively producing new virus.

Most people with HIV need life-long antiretroviral therapy. If they stop taking these drugs, the dormant virus can reawaken and cause problems again.

A rare few have been apparently “cured”, after aggressive cancer therapy wiped out some of their infected cells, but this would never be recommended purely to treat HIV.

For Diaspora Digital Media Updates click on Whatsapp, or Telegram. For eyewitness accounts/ reports/ articles, write to: Follow us on X (Fomerly Twitter) or Facebook

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Latest Updates

SHELT – Cyber-security firm, berths in Nigeria

The Labours of Healing a Nation, by Pat Utomi

KOGI: 25 Passengers Burnt To Death in Accident

Nigeria not ripe for State Police, says Inspector General

Naira exchange rate for Monday, April 22, 2024, in Nigeria

Nigeria hosts African Counter-Terrorism Summit in Abuja

Tension as Oba Of Benin stops installation of Hausa Leader

Sachet water is most sold commodity in Nigeria – Survey

Nigeria receives fresh $2.25bn World Bank Loan

Dukku Hill collapses, crushes 8 students to death in Nigeria 

Subscribe to DDM Newsletter for Latest News