Scientists have reportedly managed to cure a second patient of HIV, the virus that cause AIDS, after more than a decade spent trying to duplicate the first cure in 2007.
According to the researchers, the patient — who is only known as the ‘London patient’, is in sustained remission following a bone marrow transplant from an HIV-resistant donor. This makes the man the second person ever to have been cleared of the fatal virus that affects some 37 million people worldwide.
The treatment and result was published in the international science journal Nature and is expected to be officially announced at a medical conference in Seattle soon.
According to reports. the scientists used the same method that proved successful for a HIV-positive patient in Berlin in 2007. In both cases, the transplant was intended to treat blood cancers.
Since the first-cured patient, doctors have tried the same procedure in a handful of other HIV patients, but to date, the treatments didn’t work or the patients died from their cancer or complications of the transplant. It was never clear there’d be another success like Brown’s.
“These new findings reaffirm our belief that there exists a proof of concept that HIV is curable,” International AIDS Society president Anton Pozniak said in a statement.
“The hope is that this will eventually lead to a safe, cost-effective and easy strategy to achieve these results using gene technology or antibody techniques.”