Potential cure for AIDS discovered by Australian scientists
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January 26th, 2013 (11:03 AM).
Join Date: Apr 2011
Quote originally posted by
I'm gonna be the downer here. It's not the first time we've heard about a new potential solution to AIDS, cancer, etc. and we still don't have a cure in sight.
I think it's good they're researching this. It seems like a promising approach to neutralize HIV and keep it from becoming AIDS. I think we need to do more research, give it more funding. But I'm just gonna hold my breath a little longer.
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Interesting as this is, it's just another way in which we're able to try to stop HIV from replicating and, unfortunately, I can see two big drawbacks with it:
""But the virus would stay latent, it wouldn't wake up, so it wouldn't develop into AIDS. With a treatment like this, you would maintain a healthy immune system."" - most of the time people contract HIV without realising it and it's not for a fair while that it begins to make its mark. So I'd wonder how much of the time the virus is actually identified early enough for the treatment to make a difference. The second drawback lies in the nature of the therapy itself; the fact that it targets a protein in HIV (although, honestly, the article is kinda weirdly worded when it's talking about this Nullbasic thing - is it saying that the protein modified is called Nullbasic or what?) means that HIV can get around this via mutation. One of the current treatments for AIDS is a medication designed to inhibit an enzyme which helps HIV to assemble its DNA within a host cell but this is often rendered ineffective due to the ability of HIV to modify the structure of this enzyme via mutation. Honestly, I don't see a reason why it'd be unable to do the same thing here unless the protein targeted is one which cannot afford to undergo mutations or which simply isn't mutable, for whatever reason. Unless I'm really misunderstanding how this treatment works.
In any case though - it's a big step forward and I'll do some reading on this a bit later. If this really can stop HIV dead in all cases in a living organism rather than in a laboratory where the numbers of HIV particles are more limited then... damn, good work. But like Scarf here, I'm not holding my breath.
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