Scientists are now better able to predict how quickly the HIV virus will return after individuals stop treatment following a discovery by researchers at UNSW Australia and the University of Oxford.
While existing antiretroviral therapy (ART) stops the HIV virus from replicating, it does not completely remove the virus. Destroying the ‘hidden’ reservoirs of the virus remains one of the ‘holy grails’ of HIV research.
Previous research has shown the treatment of HIV with ART in the weeks following transmission produces a state of ‘post-treatment control’ in some patients. However, the mechanisms that induce and maintain this state of remission remain unclear.
This study provides a new window into understanding the processes that maintain viral persistence in the body, which is crucial for eradicating HIV.