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Thread: HIV vaccine that transforms cell DNA brings fresh hope

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    HIV vaccine that transforms cell DNA brings fresh hope

    This looks incredibly promising.

    HIV vaccine that transforms cell DNA brings fresh hope - BBC News

    A radical new approach to vaccination seems to completely protect monkeys from HIV, US scientists report. Vaccines normally train the immune system to fight an infection. Instead, researchers at the Scripps Research Institute in California have altered the DNA of monkeys to give their cells HIV-fighting properties. The team describe it as "a big deal" and want to start human trials soon. Independent experts say the idea is worth "strong consideration". This technique uses gene therapy to introduce a new section of DNA inside healthy muscle cells. That strip of DNA contains the instructions for manufacturing the tools to neutralise HIV, which are then constantly pumped out into the bloodstream.

    Experiments, reported in the journal Nature, showed the monkeys were protected from all types of HIV for at least 34 weeks. As there was also protection against very high doses, equivalent to the amount of new virus that would be produced in a chronically infected patient, the researchers believe the approach may be useful in people who already have HIV. Lead researcher Prof Michael Farzan told the BBC: "We are closer than any other approach to universal protection, but we still have hurdles, primarily with safety for giving it to many, many people.

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    Re: HIV vaccine that transforms cell DNA brings fresh hope

    Quote Originally Posted by Anomalism View Post
    This looks incredibly promising.

    HIV vaccine that transforms cell DNA brings fresh hope - BBC News

    A radical new approach to vaccination seems to completely protect monkeys from HIV, US scientists report. Vaccines normally train the immune system to fight an infection. Instead, researchers at the Scripps Research Institute in California have altered the DNA of monkeys to give their cells HIV-fighting properties. The team describe it as "a big deal" and want to start human trials soon. Independent experts say the idea is worth "strong consideration". This technique uses gene therapy to introduce a new section of DNA inside healthy muscle cells. That strip of DNA contains the instructions for manufacturing the tools to neutralise HIV, which are then constantly pumped out into the bloodstream.

    Experiments, reported in the journal Nature, showed the monkeys were protected from all types of HIV for at least 34 weeks. As there was also protection against very high doses, equivalent to the amount of new virus that would be produced in a chronically infected patient, the researchers believe the approach may be useful in people who already have HIV. Lead researcher Prof Michael Farzan told the BBC: "We are closer than any other approach to universal protection, but we still have hurdles, primarily with safety for giving it to many, many people.
    I think that gene manipulation is certainly a must have technology and will be important for humanity. I am not sure that we want to use it widely until we have seen how it affects large populations of apes and other human near organisms in later generations. We still are not sure, what it is that has given us the explosive growth in allergy numbers yet, though there is suspicion that it might be one of the things we consider progress. In this case it would be quite likely that other systems of the body would be impacted. We just do not know. And wouldn't it be a pity to inoculate the young only to find that that is when their offspring are sterile over 20.

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