Two HIV infected show no sign of disease after Bone marrow transplants

In an exciting development for the scientists and people living with AIDS/HIV, two men became free of HIV infection after bone marrow transplants and are not under Aids drugs treatments for several months without any sign of the virus returning.  The two men, who had longstanding HIV infections, were given bone marrow transplants in Boston because they were suffering from cancers of the blood. Tests showed that as their own cells were replaced by cells from the bone marrow donor, the virus in their blood steadily dropped to undetectable levels.

Although the results are sanguine for all, scientists are not calling it completely cured case as the virus is notorious to hide itself and remain at low levels but remain capable of becoming active. To be sure of anything, scientists will have to follow-up the cases for at least one year to understand the full impact of bone marrow transplant.

What if the idea works?

Even if the bone marrow transplant shows positive results there will be challenges in making it available for everyone in need. Besides, this method also has a high mortality rate of 15-20% and the patient has to take drugs to suppress their immune system thereafter. But the experiences of the two men will teach scientists a great deal more about how to combat the virus.



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