Second man seems to be free of AIDS virus after transplant

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A British man known as the "London patient" has become the second adult in the world to be in sustained remission from HIV and could be cured.

The patient, from London, was able to successfully recover after receiving bone marrow stem cells from a donor with a rare HIV-resistant genetic mutation.

This approach led to the remarkable case in 2007 where Timothy Ray Brown, known as the "Berlin Patient," was functionally cured of an HIV infection he had had for at least 13 years.

Gupta, now at Cambridge University, treated the London patient when he was working at University College London. He was given a transplant of hematopoietic stem cells from a donor with two copies of a mutation relating to CCR5-a protein on the surface of white blood cells plays a role in the immune system.

12 years ago, there was Timothy Ray Brown, also known as the Berlin patient.

A man in the United Kingdom may be the second person ever to be cured of HIV.

A poster presented at CROI described another case of long-term HIV remission after a stem cell transplant from a donor with a double CCR5-delta-32 mutation.

Still, no one is arguing this will be a practical way to treat HIV in the millions of people around the world who are living with it.

But the reason this case is so significant is that it could help experts who are looking for new ways to tackle HIV and achieve a cure. Stem-cell transplant was carried out in this patient for treatment of a form of leukaemia that was not responding to treatment.

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He received other treatments as well, but by September 2017, he stopped taking anti-HIV drugs and has remained virus free for more than a year, the New York Times reported.

Doctors said that recent tests showed no trace of the man's previous HIV infection.

The transplant went relatively smoothly, Gupta said, but there were some side effects, including the patient suffering a period of "graft-versus-host" disease - a condition in which donor immune cells attack the recipient's immune cells.

The study stated: "Firstly, the bone marrow transplant in both HIV cure cases were primarily used to treat cancers of the blood and were modified to enable a HIV cure". Unlike for Brown, radiotherapy wasn't required and the London patient experienced far less severe consequences than Brown, but Gupta believes the chemotherapy used against the lymphoma was an essential part of its success, temporarily destroying fast-dividing cells so replacement could occur.

"This is the most reliable assay there is to demonstrate that there really are no hidden reservoirs of HIV that might be temporarily "sleeping" and might reactivate at a later date", said Professor Lever.

However, the researchers stress that such a bone-marrow transplant would not work as a standard therapy for all patients with HIV.

Prof Graham Cooke, National Institute for Health Research research professor and reader in infectious diseases from Imperial College London, said the results were "encouraging".

"For hepatitis C, we can completely cure people of the virus so they're no longer infected". Numerous attempts to replicate the procedure have not been successful until now, with the latest case dubbed that of the "London patient". "Nobody doubted the truth of the report with the Berlin patient, but it was one patient". About 1 percent of people descended from northern Europeans have inherited the mutation from both parents and are immune to most HIV.

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