Leukemia Treatment Cures Patient's HIV

Stem cell transplant has unintended, astounding side effect
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 14, 2010 2:29 PM CST

(Newser) – In another potentially big break in the treatment of AIDS, scientists believe that an HIV-positive man has been cured by a stem cell transplant, the Huffington Post reports. Timothy Ray Brown, often referred to as the "Berlin Patient," underwent both stem-cell therapy alongside conventional chemotherapy for leukemia—not his HIV infection. But three years later, researchers say that test results "strongly suggest that cure of HIV infection has been achieved."

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The stem cell donor just happened to have a natural resistance to HIV infection, explains AIDSmap.com. "If a cure has been achieved in this patient, it points the way towards attempts to develop a cure for HIV infection through genetically engineered stem cells," writes Keith Alcorn. (Read more HIV stories.)

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