Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Transplant drugs may help wipe out persistent HIV infections

Date:
April 3, 2014
Source:
Wiley
Summary:
Drugs commonly used to prevent organ rejection after transplantation may also be helpful for combating HIV, new research suggests. The findings suggest a new strategy in the fight against HIV and AIDS. Despite the effectiveness of antiviral therapies at suppressing HIV, the virus still persists indefinitely at low levels in infected patients who are diligent about taking their medications.

New research suggests that drugs commonly used to prevent organ rejection after transplantation may also be helpful for combating HIV. The findings, which are published in the American Journal of Transplantation, suggest a new strategy in the fight against HIV and AIDS.

Despite the effectiveness of antiviral therapies at suppressing HIV, the virus still persists indefinitely at low levels in infected patients who are diligent about taking their medications. "Current therapies fail to cure the disease as they do not attack those viruses that remain hidden within the immune system," said Steven Deeks, MD, of the University of California, San Francisco. Researchers suspect that inflammation in the body in response to HIV infection may create an environment that supports this viral persistence.

Dr. Deeks and his colleagues wondered whether immunosuppressant therapy could reduce such inflammation and therefore help defeat HIV. To investigate, the team looked at how HIV infection is affected by immunosuppressants that are commonly taken by kidney transplant recipients to reduce their risk of rejection. The analysis included 91 recipients who were followed for a median of 3.2 years post-transplant.

When the investigators analyzed blood samples from the study participants, they found that HIV remained well-controlled following transplantation and long-term exposure to immunosuppressive drugs. Importantly, they also discovered that patients who took a particular immunosuppressant called sirolimus as part of their treatment regimen had fewer cells in their blood that were infected with HIV over time. The findings suggest that immune-modifying drugs such as sirolimus may affect the level of HIV persistence. "Based on the observations in this study, the NIH is now sponsoring a targeted study to see if sirolimus might indeed contribute to a cure of HIV infection," said Dr. Deeks.

Dr. Deeks, who is an HIV researcher and clinician, noted that the work was done in collaboration with UCSF transplant surgeons led by Peter Stock, MD, PhD, and study coordinator Rodney Rogers. "Our study highlights the potential synergies that can occur when two very different disciplines merge their talents and resources," said Dr. Deeks. "We feel that the transplant community has much to teach the HIV community about the potential role of strong immune-suppressing drugs in curing HIV disease."

The results come only several months after the federal government passed legislation -- called the HIV Organ Transplant Equity (HOPE) Act -- to end the federal ban on the transplantation of HIV-positive organs to patients with HIV.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. P. G. Stock, B. Barin, H. Hatano, R. L. Rogers, M. E. Roland, T.-H. Lee, M. Busch, S. G. Deeks. Reduction of HIV Persistence Following Transplantation in HIV-Infected Kidney Transplant Recipients. American Journal of Transplantation, 2014; DOI: 10.1111/ajt.12699

Cite This Page:

Wiley. "Transplant drugs may help wipe out persistent HIV infections." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 April 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140403084454.htm>.
Wiley. (2014, April 3). Transplant drugs may help wipe out persistent HIV infections. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140403084454.htm
Wiley. "Transplant drugs may help wipe out persistent HIV infections." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/04/140403084454.htm (accessed October 20, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Monday, October 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

How Nigeria Beat Its Ebola Outbreak

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) The World Health Organization has declared Nigeria free of Ebola. Health experts credit a bit of luck and the government's initial response. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Another Study Suggests Viagra Is Good For The Heart

Another Study Suggests Viagra Is Good For The Heart

Newsy (Oct. 20, 2014) An ingredient in erectile-dysfunction medications such as Viagra could improve heart function. Perhaps not surprising, given Viagra's history. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Ebola Worries End for Dozens on U.S. Watch Lists

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 20, 2014) Forty-three people who had contact with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first person diagnosed with Ebola in the U.S., were cleared overnight of twice-daily monitoring after 21 days of showing no symptoms. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Fauci: Ebola Protocols to Focus on Training

Fauci: Ebola Protocols to Focus on Training

AP (Oct. 20, 2014) Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says he expects revised CDC protocols on Ebola to focus on training, observation and ensuring health care workers are more protected. (Oct. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins