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Three-Year-Old “Cured” of HIV with Antiretroviral Therapy

The Los Angeles Times reports that a 3 year old girl may be cured of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) since cessation of antiretroviral therapy (ART) nearly 18 months ago. The case was presented in NEJM where scientists explain that the child began receiving ART, consisting of a three-drug cocktail that included zidovudine, lamivudine and nevirapine, at birth due to exposure to HIV-1 through her mother. At 31 hours after birth, blood samples taken from the child showed “enough HIV RNA – 19,812 copies per milliliter of blood – to qualify for an HIV-positive diagnosis.” At 18 months old, the child’s mother stopped the therapy. When the child came in for checkups at 24, 26, and 28 months old, the HIV RNA was absent from blood samples. Researchers speculate that the “three-drug cocktail was so successful because it prevented HIV from establishing itself in the patient’s immune system.”

Read it in the Los Angeles Times.

Read the study in NEJM.