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Medical News

Two Studies Describe How HIV Destroys Cells, Leads to AIDS

December 20, 2013

"U.S. scientists have discovered the basic mechanisms that allow HIV to wipe out the body's immune system and cause AIDS, which could lead to new approaches to treatment and research for a cure for the disease that affects 35 million people around the world," Reuters reports (Steenhuysen, 12/19). "It turns out HIV, which infects only a small number of T cells at the start, destroys approximately 95 percent of immune cells through a process known as the bystander effect," VOA News states, noting the virus "destroys the immune system by infecting a relatively few number of cells that create a fiery pathway that consumes nearby cells" (Berman, 12/19). "In the paper published in Science, the Gladstone team identified a mechanism that detects the damaged cells and triggers this cell death pathway," according to Reuters. "In the paper published in Nature, the team explored the implications of blocking this cellular suicide with experiments using anti-inflammatory drugs that block the caspase-1 enzyme, including the Vertex drug VX-765," which has been tested to treat epilepsy, the news agency notes (12/19).

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See Also
New Piece of the Inflammation Puzzle Uncovered; Discovery Describes How Immune Cells Die During HIV Infection

Reader Comments:

Comment by: Gregory Freeman (St Kilda Victoria ) Thu., Jan. 9, 2014 at 10:24 pm EST
This again, is an important study. The mechanisms, of the bystander effect come from the 70's. Though empirical psychology. The notation that can be found on science, perhaps lends the reader to futher study. A highlight of the cognitive effect, in Humans rather than the virus, is the underlying causation on the study. It is indeed facinating that the pathological direction of the virus, almost has a pre disposition to a similar study, called the Blue eye / Brown eye study on discrimination, which pragmatically, would lead a learned reader, to collaborate, and assume this. Anyone else has a theory on the direction of the research.
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