27. HIV Researchers Seek a Potential Cure & said they are closer to cure HIV

HIV Researchers Seek a Potential Cure

HIV/AIDS Data Worldwide for 2009
Global Summary of Aids 2009
Global Summary of Aids 2012

According to OyaGen, one of its investigational HIV drugs is an activator of the editing enzyme known as A3G, which can reportedly block HIV infection by genetically damaging the virus. 

HIV researcher has reached on the point where a cure may be possible.This research boosted in June when a group of researchers at the NIH(National institute of health) find how HIV attacks immune cells. Scientists saw that the DNA breaks when HIV integrates its genes into cellular DNA activate DNA-protein kinase, triggering CD4+ T-cell death. This suggests that treatment of individuals with drugs block viral replication not only prevent viral replication but also improve immune system function.

Sangamo BioSciences is using another idea to improve immune system with providing functional cure. “HIV kills the CD4+ T cells such that the immune system seems never to regain control except if there is a delta 32 mutation in the CCR5 gene (which encodes the major co-receptor for HIV entry into CD4+ cells),” 

According to, Dr. Wolffe “If the mutation is in both CCR5 genes, people can be exposed but not infected. If the mutation is in only one of the CCR5 genes, progression slows, giving rise to long-term non - progressors.” The reason, she says, is that the R5-tropic strain (which is the most common strain at the early stages of infection) needs both CCR5 and CD4 to infect the cells.

Sangamo’s zinc finger protein (ZFP) technology, when attached to a nuclease or DNA-cutting enzyme, creates a new “designer” molecule ZFN that enables specific genes to be knocked out or have their expression interrupted. In repairing the break caused by the cutting enzyme, the cells often insert an error that makes the genes nonfunctional.

Sangamo is evaluating ZFP technology in two Phase II studies. Sangamo takes T cells from an HIV-infected individual treated with ART, treats the cells to disrupt the CCR5 gene, and about a month later, infuses the cells (SB-728-T) back into the patient, providing a population of T cells that is resistant to HIV and that also can mount an immune response against HIV and other opportunistic infections.
Timothy Henrich
Timothy Henrich announced in December that two of his research team's seen in patient that the HIV virus return. Both patients are 'currently in good health' and back on Antiretroviral drugs.

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