DieNadel writes to share that naturally occurring proteins called "zinc fingers" are being used in a new approach to AIDS treatment. Using modified T-Cells with the zinc fingers, researchers at the Pennsylvania School of Medicine have shown a reduction in viral load in mice
. "'By inducing mutations in the CCR5 gene using zinc finger proteins, we've reduced the expression of CCR5 surface proteins on T cells, which is necessary for the AIDS virus to enter these immune system cells,' explains first author Elena Perez, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Penn. 'This approach stops the AIDS virus from entering the T cells because it now has an introduced error into the CCR5 gene.'"