MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 26, 2016

Study shows targeted alpha therapy may eradicate HIV cells

A recent study from the European Commission's Joint Research Center (JRC) and the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York shows that targeted alpha therapy may selectively eradicate cells infected with HIV.

These cells, which originate within the central nervous system, are certain human antibodies inside the alpha emitter bismuth-123 treatment therapy that can pass through the blood brain barrier. These antibodies then detect the cells infected with HIV, destroying them and ignoring the healthy cells.

This study used the unique physical properties from alpha radiation to treat the cells. The radiation has high energy and a short path length when it is inside tissues, making it an effective potential treatment for HIV. Using the radioactive properties within this combined therapy against the virus (cART) may help people with HIV to live longer, better lives.

HIV creates reservoirs of itself inside the human body. The virus thrives inside the reservoirs to spread throughout the body. Using this treatment may solve the challenge of treating infections within the central nervous system, as it can work effectively inside the brain. This discovery could help scientists develop new treatment options for people who have HIV and its related neurocognitive disorders.

Organizations in this story

European Commission Joint Research Centre Via Enrico Fermi, 2749 Ispra, VA I-21027

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