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Biotech Medicine Science

Engineered Stem Cells Seek Out and Kill HIV In Mice 95

An anonymous reader writes "Expanding on previous research providing proof-of-principle that human stem cells can be genetically engineered into HIV-fighting cells, a team of UCLA researchers have now demonstrated that these cells can actually attack HIV-infected cells in a living organism. From the article: 'This most recent study shows that scientists can manipulate stem cells — immature cells that can develop into any type of cell — by implanting genes, turning it into killer T cells which can kill the virus in living mice. While the mouse form of HIV is not exactly the same as it is in humans, the infection and progression closely mimic the virus in humans, and eliminating it is a huge step forward, researchers said.'"
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Engineered Stem Cells Seek Out and Kill HIV In Mice

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  • by dryriver ( 1010635 ) on Sunday April 15, 2012 @03:41PM (#39695055)
    Then much kudos/applause to the scientists who make this happen. Its about time that the mega-nastiness that is HIV/AIDS becomes curable, and I hope that the disease/virus will hopefully be eradicated completely from this planet some day. (On a slightly sentimental note, it is too bad that thousands of lab-mice/-rats have had to suffer all kinds of pains in various science-labs over the decades, just so that we humans can overcome common diseases. Maybe some lab-rat/lab-mice statues should be errected in a few town squares somewhere, so that we become conscious of where our medical cures come from...)
  • by Gordo_1 ( 256312 ) on Sunday April 15, 2012 @04:51PM (#39695449)

    Since you're so self-righteously against scientific research on animals, perhaps you should consider making a stand and refusing to use therapies that were tested on animals.

  • by Asic Eng ( 193332 ) on Sunday April 15, 2012 @05:12PM (#39695567)

    We have to kill millions of rodents to protect ourselves from disease and to secure our food supplies. Even if you decide to live as a vegetarian mice and rats need to be killed e.g. for grain supplies. It's really absurd to put the focus on the inconsequential number of lab mice.

    We should rather make sure that the scientists who use these lab mice to cure and treat horrible diseases get the respect and public backing they deserve.

  • by tragedy ( 27079 ) on Sunday April 15, 2012 @05:18PM (#39695599)

    This treatment is meant to actually kill off the infected cells before they spread more HIV around the body. Combining this with anti-retrovirals might actually be able to wipe all of the HIV out of a patients body. At least it's a step in that direction.

  • Re:First (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Mithent ( 2515236 ) on Sunday April 15, 2012 @05:28PM (#39695645)
    A lot of "we injected him with stem cells!" is rather questionable, something akin to throwing some parts into a car's engine bay if it stops working. Sure, the parts might potentially be useful, but they're not necessarily the right ones, nor will they necessarily end up in the right places. There's certainly potential for future stem-cell based therapies, but most things that you can get done in clinics today are of dubious benefit.
  • by Cstryon ( 793006 ) <Cstryon@NOspAM.gmail.com> on Sunday April 15, 2012 @05:40PM (#39695701)

    The right to survive. We are fitter than them. My health, and my species health means more to me than some lower creatures life. Same reason for why I eat.

    I imagine it would suck for us when some higher alien species starts doing the same thing to us. ( not likely as biologically we'd probably be very different. Maybe using us for their own benefit in some other ways),. But they would have, naturally, every right too. Good thing we are capable of complicated thought, and perhaps could up-rise.

    The only thing that makes me worth living in nature is my ability to keep stronger creatures from using me for their good.

  • Re:Waste of money (Score:5, Insightful)

    by postbigbang ( 761081 ) on Sunday April 15, 2012 @11:26PM (#39697439)

    Go ahead and try to prevent it. Seems pretty tough to do. Let's, while were at it, prevent people from driving drunk, killing others in rage, and war.

    People behave as they will behave. Some get HIV in ways that don't involve sex, although these are rare they are statistically significant.

    Sex drives people, and they do it unprotected by condoms and common sense. This is who we are. So is cancer. We know a few things that can easily start it. A few things that can prevent it. A few things that cure it.

    People still die from either one. Both need a cure. You're absolutely right: still a major problem to be solved.

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." -- Will Rogers