(Photo : YouTube: GE)
Researchers in Denmark are working hard to find a cure for HIV, and now, as doctors begin human clinical trials on a new drug, some say a legitimate cure for the disease that has plagued mankind for decades may be mere months away.
Sadly though, that is simply not the case, according to Kevin Robert Frost, CEO of amfAR, the Foundation for AIDS Research. As Frost explained to the Huffington Post, the first results of these human clinical trials are months away, and have not a confirmed cure for HIV: "We're not months away from a cure ...There is still a lot of work that has to be done."
Frost went on to say that the cure for HIV has been difficult to achieve due to the nature of the HIV virus itself, and scientists have had to spend years trying to find drugs that would allow them to target the virus. "Essentially, the biggest obstacle to a cure for people with HIV is that the virus lives in viral reservoirs which are not susceptible to the current drugs we have ... What a lot of scientists have been trying to do lately is figure out if there are drugs that can stimulate the viral reservoirs so that we may begin to target them," said Frost.
Work developed on the Foundation for AIDS Research base off of an in vitro study from Aarhus University Hospital. In the study, researchers found a drug that allows a hidden form of HIV to be exposed from the so-called "reservoirs" it forms in immune system cells that prevent normal drugs from combating the disease. By forcing HIV out of hiding, it allows scientists and doctors to neutralize the virus and hopefully find ways of eradicating it completely.
However, this so-called cure for HIV could be years away from approval from the FDA and available for use. After all, there is no guarantee that the new treatment will work, and scientists will have to determine if the cure has any side effects that make it dangerous. This process could take up to 10 years, according to Frost, and could derail this potential breakthrough.
Nonetheless, the news shows that progress is being made controlling and even wiping out the disease that has killed millions. While an HIV cure once seemed virtually impossible, scientists may have begun turning the tide on the devastating virus once and for all.