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New scientific advancements in the treatment of HIV and AIDS are making the consequences of a positive HIV much less severe than they formerly were. Where once death was assured within a few years, now patients can expect a relatively long, healthy life following diagnosis.
The prospects continue to get better. For example, a team of researchers from Japan and the U.S. recently developed a technique that alters the genes of human T-cells that make them resistant to infection from the HIV virus.
The findings could solve one of the biggest hurdles in curing HIV. Despite the progress made in improving the length and quality of HIV patients, scientists have still been unable to stop the diseases from infecting the immune system, which allows it to spread through the body.
This study illustrates a unique way in which intracellular immunization can be achieved," says James M. Wilson, editor-in-chief of the journal Human Gene Therapy, which published the study.
Though the technique is still in development, the team hopes that it could soon lead to improved treatments for individuals who have received positive HIV tests. This could continue the progress that has been made in recent years toward eliminating the disease.
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