HIV-Positive Man “Cured”

by Ryan on May 16, 2011

in Culture,Health Care,science

A Bay-Area man who contracted HIV in 1995 no longer has a trace of the virus in his body.  HIV can lay dormant in cells for a period of time even after symptoms develop, giving a false reading of its absence in the blood — it’s a damn tricky virus.  However, today scientists are touting Timothy Ray Brown as the first human ever cured of HIV.

But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves.  Brown received a very risky bone-marrow transplant to treat his leukemia.  The adult (ahem) stem cell donor happened to have a very rare immunity gene which replicated in Brown’s compatible body, pushing the HIV out (what I absolutely never heard before was that an estimated 1% of Caucasians are simply immune from HIV!).

However, while Brown was cured, this breakthrough does not mean we have a “cure” for HIV in the traditional sense just yet.  Scientists still aren’t sure what factors contributed to Brown’s elimination of the disease.

But, damn — after 30 years of this epidemic just typing “cured of HIV” is so surreal.

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Baby Free of HIV | Axis of Right
March 4, 2013 at 7:06 pm

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