Cure for HIV/AIDS may not have been found yet but there are other developments that could stop the disease and save human lives. One of them is the Antriovertial Treatment (ART) therapy which makes the virus causing AIDS dormant and can extend the life efficiency of a person. But the major drawback is that as soon as ART medicines are stopped, HIV starts forming again and scientists are working hard to understand the virus reservoir mechanism.
Science Translational Medicine at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine, South Africa has found some shocking results in the field. It has been found that the reservoir of HIV in the blood is stable even after the treatment, work is being to stop that and create improved medicines that stop the process.
Study on Virus Reservoir Process
Ronald Swanstrom and Carolyn Williamson from the University of Cape Town carried out a new research study to understand the process of virus reservoir formation in detail. They took blood samples of nine infected South African women at every level of HIV treatment and the results came out a bit shocking.
Dr. Ron Swanstrom and colleagues show that the #HIV latent reservoir is formed in response to ART versus prior to. This paper in Science Translational Medicine suggests new strategies to limit reservoir formation! https://t.co/3milBm402w #hivcure #AIDS #viralload #UNC @ScienceTM pic.twitter.com/6Uc8OGZoBH
— Office of Research, School of Medicine, UNC-CH (@OoR_UNC) October 10, 2019
The replication-competent #HIV latent reservoir is primarily established near the time of therapy initiation.
— defeatHIV (@defeatHIV) October 10, 2019
Almost 71 percent of average viral strains were the same which were present at the start of the treatment. It proves that the ART therapy has either induced the virus reservoir formation or somehow has stabilized the process which makes them form rapidly once the meds are stopped.
Completely Effective ART Medicines
Swanstrom, Williamson, and other researchers are now working on effective treatment which would totally stop the virus reservoir formation instead of stabilizing them. They are trying to combine HIV antiretroviral treatment with other drugs which would stop the CD4 T cells from turning into memory cells to prevent much of the reservoir from forming at the beginning.
The main aim is to provide ART therapy and other such medicines to HIV/AIDS infected people in such a way that the virus doesn’t come back even after stopping it. The first step in the process is to stop the latent reservoir formation and slowly reduce HIV in human blood.