Scientists have cured living animals of HIV using Crispr gene-editing, a new study claims. The virus remains elusive due to its ability to hide away in latent reservoirs.
But now, in new research published this week, US scientists showed they could completely remove HIV DNA from human cells implanted into mice – preventing further infection.
It is the first time scientists have ever achieved complete elimination in animal models – paving the way to a human clinical trial.
Most exciting, the study at the Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University and the University of Pittsburgh involved a ‘humanized’ model in which mice were transplanted with human immune cells and infected with the virus.
The new work, led by Dr Wenhui Hu at LKSOM, builds on the same team’s previous research, in which they managed to delete HIV-1 from the genome of most tissues.
A year later, they have been able to eliminate the virus from every tissue.