Since their discovery in the early 1980s, HIV and AIDS have killed some 39 million people worldwide.
The autoimmune disease is especially difficult to fight given that it’s frequently asymptomatic and because it directly attacks the immune system and tricks the body into duplicating infected cells.
Viruses outnumber all other biological units on the Earth, and they have been around much longer than any living organism today, largely because they hijack healthy cells and cause them to replicate. For some viruses, such as the one that causes HIV, scientists have been unable to develop a vaccine that would teach the body to kill the virus in its early stages.
But what if scientists could specifically “delete” the virus from human cells even after infection? Researchers at the Temple University School of Medicine are doing just that.
This exciting breakthrough could change the face of viral diseases forever.
HIV and AIDS are among the deadliest diseases our species and planet have ever known.
The statistics are even more staggering when looking at HIV and AIDS together: some 36.9 million people worldwide are believed to be infected with the disease, including 2.6 million children.
A research team at the Temple University School of Medicine led by Kamel Khalili, PhD, who is a professor and Chair of the Department of Neuroscience at Temple, made a recent discovery that could change how we attack viral intruders.
In a study published in Nature earlier this month, Khalili and his team explain how they used molecular tools to “delete” the HIV-1 DNA from infected cells.