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Biotech Science

Human Blood May Contain A Cure For AIDS 309

Posted by Zonk
from the that-would-be-quite-convenient dept.
Lisandro writes "German scientists at the University of Ulm have identified a natural ingredient of human blood that prevents the HIV-1 virus from from infecting immune cells and multiplying. The molecule, which they call virus-inhibitory peptide (VIRIP), promises new types of effective treatment for HIV in the future. 'Tweaks to its amino acid components boosted its anti-HIV potency by two orders of magnitude. Tests also showed that some derivatives of the molecule are highly stable in human blood plasma, and non-toxic even at very high concentrations. A synthetic version of VIRIP also proved effective at blocking HIV, excluding the possibility that some other factor was responsible. VIRIP targets a sugar molecule which HIV uses to infect a host cell. '"
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Human Blood May Contain A Cure For AIDS

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  • by dAzED1 (33635) on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:25PM (#18813773) Homepage Journal
    "VIRIP targets a sugar molecule which HIV uses to infect a host cell."

    Well clearly then, the real solution is to destroy all the sugars in your body! /sarcasm

    Good for them though, lets get this solved.
    • by gurps_npc (621217) on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:34PM (#18813901) Homepage
      A huge number of viruses target sugars. It is a common material in the human body.

      No, that is not a sad comment on the human diet, it is instead an explanation for why we like sugar so much, it is so usefull and neccessary.

      • it is instead an explanation for why we like sugar so much, it is so usefull and neccessary.

        And all this time I thought I liked sugar because it is sweet and delicious!
        • by xENoLocO (773565) *
          ... I didn't realize I was genetically predisposed to like sugars!
          • by morcego (260031) on Friday April 20, 2007 @02:51PM (#18815951)
            Actually (even tho I sense you were aiming for Funny), this is an evolutionary imperative (or something like that).
            Our primitive ancestors who enjoyed (and could metabolize) sugar (and fat) were able to get much more energy into their bodies. They were better adapter to an environment where finding food/energy was difficult.
            So yes, you ARE genetically predisposed to like sugars (and fat foods).
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by RSKennan (835119)
          It's sweet and delicious because we need it.
          • by beckerist (985855) on Friday April 20, 2007 @01:27PM (#18814741) Homepage
            Predators, like cats, cannot taste sweet because their body receives enough sugars from their food sources that they don't require the need to seek more out. We, as omnivores, have a much larger "taste range" as we require many different, and many more nutrients.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by drinkypoo (153816)

        instead an explanation for why we like sugar so much, it is so usefull and neccessary.

        It's useful, but not necessary. The body can run on ketones.

        • by Lane.exe (672783)
          Yeah, if you feel like dying.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by drinkypoo (153816)
            I consumed very little carbohydrates (very hard to eat NONE) for over a year - in most cases less than 10g/day, and I was in the best health in which I had ever been. I lost weight, I put on muscle, my cholesterol was lower than it had been when I was eating carbs. Your mileage may vary, but your FUD is pathetic. You're either misled and spreading someone else's FUD, or you're making the usual idiot mistake of confusing ketosis with ketoacidosis, which are not remotely the same thing.
            • There's a rather significant difference between something being unnecessary and being necessary only in small quantities. Needing 10g of carbohydrates certainly doesn't make carbohydrates unnecessary. You also eventually reach the point where you don't want to lose any more weight.
              • by drinkypoo (153816)

                There's a rather significant difference between something being unnecessary and being necessary only in small quantities. Needing 10g of carbohydrates certainly doesn't make carbohydrates unnecessary.

                10g carbs isn't even hardly worth mentioning.

                You also eventually reach the point where you don't want to lose any more weight.

                This is true, although once I started working out regularly (three times a week, one hour per workout) I stopped losing weight anyway :)

            • No offense obviously, but it's quite a leap to say you were in the best health you've ever been in, and it's primarily because all nervous system cells use carbs as their only source of energy.

              In a heavily carb deficient diet, the body is forced to cleave fat and send it through some extremely inefficient metabolic pathways to convert it to carbs just to keep your brain, peripheral nerves, and all of those in between running smoothly. In addition, your liver's and muscles' carb/glycogen reserves are near-co
            • Were you on a specific diet? What foods did you a) eat and b) not eat. Just a health-aware geek trying to get in shape.
              • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                by drinkypoo (153816)

                Were you on a specific diet? What foods did you a) eat and b) not eat. Just a health-aware geek trying to get in shape.

                I was on something like the Atkins diet, but I didn't buy a book or anything. I just kept my carb intake below 50g/day religiously - NO CHEATING - and the weight dropped off. For the first nine months I was pretty much sitting on my ass and consistently lost ten pounds a month.

                I wrote the following two articles about the atkins diet and the food pyramid [everything2.com] and what to eat on the atkins diet [everything2.com]

  • well... (Score:5, Informative)

    by mapkinase (958129) on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:26PM (#18813783) Homepage Journal
    Abstract of original article in Cell [cell.com].

    A variety of molecules in human blood have been implicated in the inhibition of HIV-1. However, it remained elusive which circulating natural compounds are most effective in controlling viral replication in vivo. To identify natural HIV-1 inhibitors we screened a comprehensive peptide library generated from human hemofiltrate. The most potent fraction contained a 20-residue peptide, designated VIRUS-INHIBITORY PEPTIDE (VIRIP), corresponding to the C-proximal region of 1-antitrypsin, the most abundant circulating serine protease inhibitor. We found that VIRIP inhibits a wide variety of HIV-1 strains including those resistant to current antiretroviral drugs. Further analysis demonstrated that VIRIP blocks HIV-1 entry by interacting with the gp41 fusion peptide and showed that a few amino acid changes increase its antiretroviral potency by two orders of magnitude. Thus, as a highly specific natural inhibitor of the HIV-1 gp41 fusion peptide, VIRIP may lead to the development of another class of antiretroviral drugs.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:26PM (#18813789)
    Sincerely,

    God
  • so that this is no longer a threat to HIV?

    It's out to reproduce, that's its job.

    RS

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by the_wishbone (1018542)
      It's out to reproduce, that's its job.

      How'd it get THAT job? I'm gonna kill my guidance counselor...
    • by sorak (246725) on Friday April 20, 2007 @03:56PM (#18817037)

      I am not a scientist, but there is no guarantee that this particular strain of HIV can exist without that sugar molecule, or that evolution will occur fast enough to save the species. For example, this may be like removing oxygen from a human environment. Sure, we may one day evolve the ability to exist on another common chemical, but we could never do it in time, if a natural catastrophe should strike.

      This could be an excellent argument for organizations trying to distribute AIDs drugs in third world nations (once they get their hands on this one), since the practice of curing only those who can afford it would simply allow the virus to exist long enough to evolve (if possible), whereas curing everybody could could make it go the way of polio and small-pox.

      But, I reiterate. I am not a scientist, so the next person to read this may point out where I am wrong.

  • Weird (Score:4, Funny)

    by stratjakt (596332) on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:28PM (#18813813) Journal
    Cuz I got it by drinking human blood.

    Now is that the definition of irony or what?
  • by slusich (684826) *
    Seems like every six months or so now, there's some new research promising new hope for AIDS.
    I really hope that this turns into something, but until one of these new finds turns into a cure or at least a vaccine I'll still be seeing freinds die.
    I'm just sick of hearing of new breakthroughs and then not hearing another word about them.
    • by brunes69 (86786)
      I don't mean to be insensitivity or brash. I am very hopeful this will turn into a cure. But statements like "I'll still be seeing friends die" sounds like lies to me - how many friends with HIV can you actually have?

      When it comes down to it - HIV and AIDS are very easily preventable diseases. Anyone who takes proper minimal precautions will not get HIV or AIDS, unless they are maliciously targetted or woth in a health-related field and/or are VERY unlucky.

      Personally I have always felt the absolutely enormo
      • by AaronW (33736)
        A person I know recently came upon a nasty car accident and provided aid to the driver, including mouth to mouth until the proper authorities arrived, getting the victim's blood all over him including his mouth. Later he learned that the accident victim, who survived, was infected by AIDS. They immediately put him on medication to hopefully block it, but now he's living on pins and needles hoping he did not get infected.

        AIDs is not as big of a problem in western nations as it is in some parts of Africa, w
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by slusich (684826) *
        In the last 10 years I've lost 4 friends to AIDS. Two were gay. One had an unhealthy relationship with IV drugs. We still don't know how the last one contracted it.

        Two close relatives have died, and one more is currently living with being HIV+.

        I'm sorry if you don't believe me. Doesn't matter if you do or don't. Was just putting in my two cents.
        • by Altus (1034)

          wow, im sorry to hear that but even you have to admit that you are on the statistically short end of the stick here. It is fairly unusual for anyone not involved in AIDS care to know that many people with HIV.

          Still, im sorry for you losses.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by nvrrobx (71970)
        If you don't mean to be insensitive or brash, why are you being that way?

        I have lost two people so far to this disease in my life, and I have more than 5 friends that are HIV+ today.

        To say that type 1 diabetes, a treatable disease, deserves more money than HIV/AIDS research is absolutely ludicrious. Type 1 diabetes will kill you if left untreated. HIV/AIDS will kill you, period. The retrovirals help extend your life, but have no doubt, it is a terminal disease. Have you ever seen someone die of HIV/AIDS
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by brunes69 (86786)
          When it comes down to it, you are born with Diabetes. You aren't born with AIDS - you got it either due to being extremely unlocky or due to your own ineptitide.

          People with Type I diabetes lives are no picnic. Imagine telling a 1 year old child they have to inject a needle ito themselves 3 times a day for the rest of their known lives. Imagine having too explain to everyone you aren't a junkie, you are a diabetic, every time they see needles all over your house.

          There is a HUGE DIFFERENCE in morality between
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by compro01 (777531)
            You aren't born with AIDS

            yes, you can be. if your mother had it, odds are damn good you will.
      • by roman_mir (125474)
        When it comes down to it - HIV and AIDS are very easily preventable diseases. Anyone who takes proper minimal precautions will not get HIV or AIDS, unless they are maliciously targetted or woth in a health-related field and/or are VERY unlucky.
        - peopple get infected with HIV by mistake all the time, there are many cases of tainted blood transfusions across the world. Also some of those infected with the virus spread it on purpose, they feel that if they got it, they should take as many people with them as
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Intron (870560)
        "I don't mean to be insensitivity"

        you failed

        "HIV and AIDS are very easily preventable diseases."

        So is the common cold, and the method is pretty similar, just never touch anybody else.

        "even if it is their fault they became infected"

        The real reason that you don't want to see money spent on AIDS research, your basic belief that they deserved what they got. Good thing you're never done anything stupid in your life.

        Lung cancer and diabetes are also due to lifestyle, but nobody is blaming the victims they way th
        • by Sax Maniac (88550)
          Lung cancer and diabetes are also due to lifestyle, but nobody is blaming the victims they way they do with AIDS.

          The OP said type 1 (aka juvenile) diabetes, which is not preventable and has nothing to do with lifestyle. Type 1 is an auto-immune disease, where the insulin-producing cells are killed off by the body. Type 2 (aka adult-onset) can be associated with lifestyle, but isn't always. My father-in-law got type 2 simply by getting old, not fat.

        • by SatanicPuppy (611928) * <`Satanicpuppy' `at' `gmail.com'> on Friday April 20, 2007 @02:05PM (#18815305) Journal
          Comparing AIDS and the common cold is ridiculous. You can get the cold from almost anything, but to get AIDS you have to either have sex with someone who has it, or inject their blood...As a virus goes, it's extremely difficult to catch.

          While blaming the victim is rarely worthwhile, this is a disease that could basically be eradicated by education, testing, and self control. The reason it's spread so widely is that people aren't into any of those things.
        • by operagost (62405)

          So is the common cold, and the method is pretty similar, just never touch anybody else.
          That's a pretty obvious straw man you have there, isn't it? Obviously, asking a person to avoid all contact with other humans is rather unreasonable compared to asking them to abstain or use a condom.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by dru (4742)

        When it comes down to it - HIV and AIDS are very easily preventable diseases.

        That may be true, in the same, clinical way that lung cancer and obesity are easily preventable diseases. The complication arises when you try to change human behavior on a societal level. People consume carbonated soda and french fries becase it tastes good! People smoke because it feels good! The same is true of sex and IV drugs.

        Add to this the fact that humans are very bad at assessing risk, and you have a recipe for the HIV epidemic.

      • by zymurgyboy (532799) <zymurgyboy@@@yahoo...com> on Friday April 20, 2007 @01:55PM (#18815157)

        I don't mean to be insensitivity or brash.
        Then don't proceed to be. It doesn't excuse the insensitive, judgemental comments that follow.

        Sure, some people weren't as careful as they should have been and got infected, but guess what... They live in the same world with the rest of us and can subsequently spread their illness. This is a public health issue. Morality judgements of people infected with STDs don't bring about cures for them any faster. Nor does the attempted imposition of the same morality on the rest of the, as yet, uninfected population seem to be having much effect in slowing down the spread either, let alone stopping it.

        How 'bout instead of taking research money away from HIV and giving it some more morally worthy disease, we just resolve to spend more research money on all of them and stop making questionable moral assessments of sick people.

      • by zCyl (14362)

        Anyone who takes proper minimal precautions will not get HIV or AIDS, unless they are maliciously targetted or woth in a health-related field and/or are VERY unlucky.

        I believe this is fairly false. Just about the only way to ensure you do not contract HIV is to not have sex with anyone. You cannot always have sex with a condom, because then you cannot have children. (And of course, condoms fail.) Even if a person only has sex within a monogamous relationship (which for some people is not a "minimal" pre

    • I really hope that this turns into something
      I was about to say that this will depend on the pharmcos being able to patent it (or modify it into something they can patent) and then charge $20,000 per treatment, but someone below beat me to the punch...
    • by srmalloy (263556)
      Unfortunately, from the description, I don't see this as being any kind of a cure; it's described as preventing the HIV-1 virus from infecting cells and multiplying. That doesn't do anything to eradicate the virus in your system; since they've established that viri can remain dormant for long periods of time, as soon as you stopped receiving VRIP, the virus would be able to infect cells and multiply. What it would do is halt progression of an HIV-1 infection, either allowing someone infected with HIV to liv
    • And I've heard of monumental progress toward the treatment of MS and MD, but yet nothing difinitive. It is the way of the world with research. A new discovery ignites a glimmer of hope long enough to carry us to the next new discovery, which gives us a little more hope...

      It is far better than hopelessness, but I understand your pain.
    • by thepotoo (829391)
      Actually, a pretty high number of these promising cures do work out. The problem is the AIDS (HIV really) is a lot faster than we are when it comes to the cure. Basically the virus evolves faster than we can test out new drugs. It's similar to how bacteria acquire immunities to anti-bacterial soap. We've had some cures* which worked great, and many are still used today, but the virus evolves fast enough that it can get by whatever we throw at it. It works by reverse transcriptase (enzyme which turns R
  • "Tweaks to its amino acid components boosted its anti-HIV potency by two orders of magnitude."

    Considering that we've known about 1% of the population is naturally immune to HIV, if we can use these tweaks to increase that percentage by two orders of magnitude...

    Goodbye, Darwin. Hello, future.
    • by samkass (174571)
      Goodbye, Darwin. Hello, future.

      Not quite... natural selection will still be at work, but now it will be the folks that have some fundamentalist belief or physical inhibition to having this done to them will be slowly selected out. For instance, I'd put money that if the human race survives a few thousand more years, that antibiotic allergies will be selected out of the gene pool.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        I'd put money that if the human race survives a few thousand more years, that antibiotic allergies will be selected out of the gene pool.

        Is the correllary true? That if the human race diminishes we will not have acess to this AIDS technology? The pool will be "closed", so to speak?
    • Humans have been circumventing Darwin for centuries. The only thing left we don't control are viruses and cancer. And it's not like it's such a bad thing, with the exception of stupid people living so long. Modern society, with it's welfare, social security, laws, birth control, medicine, and safety regulations all fly in the face of natural selection. If you're stupid, we have all these laws and people looking out for you to keep you from doing something stupid and killing youself. If you're lazy, we

      • natural selection is always at work. It might be less brutal now, but it's still there.
        • I suppose, but lets say it no nonger works to the advantage of the species. Natural selection should select the most fit to survive. That would be the smart, strong, fast, cunning, etc. Now, in this false environment we've created for ourselves, about the only people being selected for are the ones who don't use birth control. Natural selection assumes that the most desirable of the species will be the most prolific maters. While this still may be generally true, mating no longer means offspring. Whic
          • Natural selection should select the most fit to survive

            And it is. It's picking those most fit to survive in the current conditions. Current conditions mean you don't need to be fast or strong. It will still select those who are best able to survice under the current presures of the world. Evolution doesnt have a direction or a speed, it's just change to adapt to the world.
          • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

            by xenocide2 (231786)
            "Natural selection should select the most fit to survive."

            That's not strictly true. Natural selection is survival of the fittest, to reproduce. Once you stop having children, natural selection becomes much weaker, as your contributions to the population is merely ensuring that your children survive and reproduce, en masse. Not much selection against cancer when you're 80.

            Even though our society has shifted away from having children to make ends on the farm meet, to investing in the survival of every child s
  • non-toxic even at very high concentrations

    Does this stuff affect other viruses? (Is it something that evolved for this reason?) If so, why doesn't the body make more of it already? Would that be too biologically expensive, or would that have problematic effects we haven't recognized yet?

    • by Stonent1 (594886)
      Non-toxic even at high concentrations is the same thing they said about Thalidomide. The compound created w/o knowing what it cured.
    • by Upaut (670171) on Friday April 20, 2007 @01:48PM (#18815025) Homepage Journal
      non-toxic even at very high concentrations
      Does this stuff affect other viruses? (Is it something that evolved for this reason?) If so, why doesn't the body make more of it already? Would that be too biologically expensive, or would that have problematic effects we haven't recognized yet?


      Well, it is a miracle drug that cures everything, from deadly viruses, bacterial infections, even cancers. The problem is that VIRIP, or as its know under its commercial name, Trutonin, obliterates the person's immune system... Creating a lifelong dependance on the drug.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Frozen Void (831218)
      Non-toxic doesn't mean its harmless.It could alter metabolism or immune function such that they work expending 2x more energy or making adverse effects(e.g. like cytokine storm) when fighting something else.
      Besides the virus is too young(several human generations age) for us to evolve(and Central Africa would be the first to have evolutionary advantage) more of the anti-virus functions.
    • "...20-residue peptide, designated VIRUS-INHIBITORY PEPTIDE (VIRIP)corresponding to the C-proximal region of 1-antitrypsin, the most abundant circulating serine protease inhibitor."

      The 1-antitrypsin protein is something there's a lot of in the blood. Its role is prevent one of the body's degrading proteins from breaking down things it shouldn't be breaking down. This 20 residue peptide is just the end bit of the larger protein. The anti-HIV functions are more like a happy side effect of the larger protein's
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by lawpoop (604919)
      "Does this stuff affect other viruses? "

      Perhaps, but probably not.

      "If so, why doesn't the body make more of it already? Would that be too biologically expensive, or would that have problematic effects we haven't recognized yet?"

      The reason that we don't have more of it already is that there has been no selective pressure on our genome to produce more of it. That is, we reproduce ourselves well enough without it.
  • Sythesis (Score:3, Insightful)

    by DrWho520 (655973) on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:35PM (#18813923) Journal
    'Tweaks to its amino acid components boosted its anti-HIV potency by two orders of magnitude. Tests also showed that some derivatives of the molecule are highly stable in human blood plasma, and non-toxic even at very high concentrations. A synthetic version of VIRIP also proved effective at blocking HIV, excluding the possibility that some other factor was responsible. VIRIP targets a sugar molecule which HIV uses to infect a host cell. '"

    Yes, but how effective. Generally, drug companies synthesize naturally occurring compounds (effedrine vs. psuedoeffedrine) to remove nasty side effects and improve performance. However, this systhesis also allows the companies to patent their drug formulations and charge exhorbitant amounts of money for they molecular forgeries. In this case, I wonder how "proved effective" matches up with a two orders of magnitude boost in potency. Everyone needs to see a return on investment, but if there is no reason to make a synthetic version and the (tweaked) naturally occuring version works as well or better, I would hope seeing return on investment is translated as "lives saved" and not "dollars earned."
  • A couple years back I read an article about possibly using the HIV virus itself to create an anti-HIV virus. With it's STD origins, they even joked that the anti-HIV virus could also be transmitted sexually, so it would be a cheap way of inoculating the world. Though I haven't heard any updates since. If this was possible, it wouldn't be interesting to companies because once it was out, noone would need to get it from a doctor, they could just sleep with whomever carried it. Different ways at looking at
    • by guamman (527778)
      If that was the case, the entire population of Slashdot readers would still have to be inoculated by their doctor.
  • No wonder why I've never heard of a vampire getting AIDS, and they are constantly exposed to tainted blood.
  • virus mutation (Score:2, Insightful)

    by wizardforce (1005805)
    HIV mutates very quickly, it is able to survive in the body because it changes so often which also means that if this treatment works as well as they say and gets used alot, the virus will likely adapt to survive against it. eventually we will have the same problem with this treatment as we do with antibiotics.
    • The biggest problem with AIDs is that it wasn't dealt with correctly from the start. I think it took something like 6 years before President Regean even admitted publicly there was a problem. The rapid spread royally screwed us and the rest of the world. If this works it could buy us time to reign that spread in and drasticly reduce it's rate of propogation. We don't need and can't expect a complete victory. This would merely give us a chance at control.
  • Perhaps somebody who can translate medicalese into English can tell us if this would hold promise for other viruses such as influenza, rabies, yellow fever, etc that kill millions every year.

    While AIDS is horrible and we all hope for a cure, I would like to see a more generalized anti-viral approach that would cure viral disease universally. Hopefully all the research expended on AIDS will have some cross-over applications.
    • by sydney094 (153190) on Friday April 20, 2007 @02:01PM (#18815251)
      No, it won't. Each virus has a very specific target that it uses to inject itself into it's host cells, so this will really only benefit HIV or other viruses that have the same attack vector.

      Imagine a wall with hundreds of doors on it, each with a different type of lock. Viruses are like burglars trying to break in, but they each only know how to pick one kind of lock. This type of treatment will result in blocking only the doors that have the same type of lock that HIV uses. Hepatitis, for example, would use a very different lock (different wall actually).

      Or, since this is slashdot, you could also look at it as a host's firewall. HIV may attack a specific port, and this treatment may block only that port.

      This is a very simplistic way of explaining it, but for the most part, this type of treatment only has an effect on HIV's specific attack characteristics. Viruses are usually very particular about what types of cells they attack, and then it can get even more specific. I'd view this as a specific fix.

      Now, where things can start to get interesting is if they can manage to generalize this approach to find the appropriate blocking peptides for other types of viruses. If the approach can be generalized, then you might be able to find treatments for other viruses, but the hope for a universal cure for viruses isn't very feasible.

      Viruses hijack our own internal machinery to reproduce themselves, so you can't exactly target them the same way that you can bacteria. (There are some common points that are being used to target specific classes of viruses, but I'm not aware of any universal point of attack). You can pretty much target viruses are three points: 1) at the point of infection into the host cell, 2) replication of the virus, 3) at the point where the daughter viruses leave the host cell. The approach mentioned in the article is of type 1.
  • That sounds to me like maybe humans, or apes, have faced something like this before and still have low-level semi-functional stuff in place to deal with it, and in a couple generations the descendents of people with the best expression of this would become tolerant or immune to HIV.
    • by geek (5680)
      Remember that AIDs is a plague to both chimps and cats. It's been around a while but has mutated multiple times. It's not surprising there is something in our blood that will fight it, whether or not it can win is another story and these guys have a long way to prove it.
    • by rrkap (634128)

      That sounds to me like maybe humans, or apes, have faced something like this before and still have low-level semi-functional stuff in place to deal with it, and in a couple generations the descendents of people with the best expression of this would become tolerant or immune to HIV.

      You're right. And some of the genes that confer resistance to AIDS are more than semi-functional. For example, in areas of the world where the Black Plague was common (Europe and Central Asia) 12%-14% of the population ha

  • by Tatisimo (1061320) on Friday April 20, 2007 @12:50PM (#18814143)
    "Patch found for AIDS vulnerability in human bodies."
  • Human Blood May Contain A Cure For AIDS

    Not mine. :-(
  • Ah yes, irony.

    But that's pretty damn cool:) Here's to hoping it actually works and makes it to market.
  • by Dannon (142147) on Friday April 20, 2007 @02:48PM (#18815893) Journal
    My fiance is a Red Cross certified HIV/AIDS instructor, so I've gotten a good earfull of what is and isn't true about AIDS "cures".

    The "cocktail" that's currently used to treat HIV infection drugs to prevent HIV from entering cells, drugs to keep it from reproducing inside cells, and drugs to keep it from breaking out of infected cells. From what I read in the summary, this new treatment fits in that first category. Good thing, because HIV has this nasty tendency to mutate and become immune to any given drug after years and years of use. When that happens, the patient has no choice but to switch over to another combination of drugs, probably more expensive, and probably not as friendly to the body. If this "blood-derived" treatment adds to the list of patient-friendly treatments available, that's fantastic.

    But the way I read this, it isn't the magic bullet "cure for AIDS" everyone is wishing for. It can slow down the progress of an infection, but reversing that progress is another matter altogether. Ditto for undoing damage to the immune system.
  • by guruevi (827432) <evi AT smokingcube DOT be> on Friday April 20, 2007 @03:23PM (#18816463) Homepage
    is abstinence. Really, don't screw around until all HIV patients are dead. Hah, it is the ultimate cure, the only problem is implementing outside a public like Slashdot.

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