Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), which usually consists of taking a daily oral anti-HIV drug, is a highly effective measure to prevent HIV infection. However, it only works well if people strictly follow the protocol, and some people end up not adhering to it. To improve this situation, researchers have tested an implant under the skin of non-human primates that releases the antiretroviral drug islatravir and maintains adequate concentrations for at least 20 months. The results, published in the journal Science Translational Medicine, show complete protection against infection with repeated exposure.
A study published in the journal Cell shares the case of the "New York patient", a woman with leukaemia and HIV who identifies as "mixed race" and has been free of the virus since 2017. She would be the first woman to be cured of the virus after a bone marrow transplant and there are now four such cases, along with patients in Düsseldorf, Berlin and London. The method involves transplanting HIV-resistant stem cells, this time from umbilical cord blood.
Reactions to the follow-up of a third patient cured of HIV after stem cell transplantation to treat leukaemia
A virological and immunological follow-up confirms that a third patient has been cured of HIV nine years after receiving a bone marrow transplant for myeloid leukaemia, and four years after stopping his antiretroviral treatment. This case of the Düsseldorf patient, similar to two previously documented in Berlin and London, is detailed in a Nature Medicine publication by an international consortium coordinated by the IrsiCaixa AIDS Research Institute and the University Medical Center in Utrecht, the Netherlands. The patient was diagnosed with HIV in 2008 and in 2011 with leukaemia, for which he received the transplant in 2013.
US researchers have designed an intranasal vaccination device that is capable of delivering immunising proteins through the mucosal surface. The research, published in Science Translational Medicine, shows that strong antibody responses against viruses such as HIV and SARS-CoV-2 have been achieved in mice and non-human primates.