A Potential Cure For AIDS

I think this can be called breaking news!

This is an amazing case of an AIDS patient who underwent a bone marrow transplant to treat leukemia is stirring new hope that gene-therapy strategies on the far edges of AIDS research might someday cure the disease.

The patient is a 42-year-old American living in Berlin. Right now he is still recovering from his leukemia therapy, but he appears to have won his battle with AIDS. 

Doctors have not detected the AIDS virus in his blood for more than 600 days, despite his having ceased all conventional AIDS medication. Normally when a patient stops taking AIDS drugs, the virus stampedes through the body within weeks, or days. And we all know where this takes him...

Dr. Gero Hütter is not an AIDS specialist, but he 'functionally cured' a patient, who shows no sign of the AIDS disease.

Doctors can't yet genetically modify all target cells. In theory, HIV would kill off the susceptible ones and, a victim of its own grim success, be left only with the genetically engineered cells that it can't infect. But so far that's just theory. All the patients remain on standard AIDS drugs, so it isn't yet known what would happen if they stopped taking them.