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LONDON MAN ‘CURED’ OF HIV after doctors used bone marrow from a patient who had a genetic mutation called CCR5 delta 32, which makes the person immune to HIV becoming the second in the world to be ‘cured’ of HIV .
A London man has become the second in the world to be ‘cured’ of HIV after a bone marrow transplant from an HIV resistant donor, doctors said.
The discovery could pave the way for a way to end AIDS, but it does not yet mean that a usable cure for HIV has been found, doctors cautioned.
The patient is still testing negative for HIV, three years after receiving bone marrow stem cells from a donor with a rare genetic mutation that resists HIV infection.
He has also not taken antiretroviral drugs for 18 months.
The new case comes 10 years after the first patient was ‘cured’ of HIV, known as the ‘Berlin patient’, using a similar method.
‘There is no virus there that we can measure. We can’t detect anything,’ said Ravindra Gupta, a professor and HIV biologist.
The doctors sought out bone marrow from a patient who had a genetic mutation called CCR5 delta 32, which makes the person immune to HIV.
‘By achieving remission in a second patient using a similar approach, we have shown that the Berlin Patient was not an anomaly and that it really was the treatment approaches that eliminated HIV in these two people.’
Gupta described his patient as ‘functionally cured’ and ‘in remission’, but cautioned: ‘It’s too early to say he’s cured.’
The man is being called ‘the London patient’, in part because his case is similar to the first known case of a functional cure of HIV – in an American man, Timothy Brown, who became known as the Berlin patient when he underwent similar treatment in Germany in 2007 which also cleared his HIV.
Brown, who had been living in Berlin, has since moved to the United States and, according to HIV experts, is still HIV-free.
The AIDS pandemic has killed around 35 million people worldwide since it began in the 1980s. yahoo.
photo-As with the Berlin case, the ‘London Patient’ was given stem cells from a donor with genetic resistance to HIV, preventing the virus from attaching itself to cells CREDIT: UNIVERSAL IMAGES GROUP EDITORIAL VIA GETTY IMAGES