Recently an HIV positive man from London has become the second person to enter in remission from the virus, after a stem cell transplant.
According to his doctor, this case is a proof of concept that scientist will be able to cure and end HIV. Although this process is not a cure for the HIV, yet.
The man in question has undergo for 18 months without any type of medicine to prevent the growth of the virus, as highly sensitive tests have been conducted and showed no trace of the virus or infection almost three years after a stem cell transplant.
“There is no virus there that we can measure. We can´t detect anything” says Ravindra Gupta, an HIV biologist who co-led a team of doctors treating this patient. Even so Gupta cautions “It’s too early to say he’s cured”
The man in question is being addressed as “The London patient”, similar to Timothy Brown, the first American man to be cured, “The Berlin patient”, in Germany back in 2007. So far, the first man to be cured of the HIV virus and still HIV-free.
The London patient contracted HIV in 2003, but in 2012 was diagnosed with a Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and in 2016 had to go into surgery as a last chance of survival with a Stem cell transplant, which had a genetic mutation known as CCR5 Delta 32, which confers a resistance to HIV.
Currently 37 million people worldwide are infected with HIV and AIDS, and since the 1980s has killed around 35 million people. The scientific research has led to the development of drug combinations that can keep the disease at bay in most patients.