News / Health

Scientists Redouble Efforts After AIDS Virus Rebounds in 'Cured' Baby

Scientists Double Up After AIDS Virus Rebounds in 'Cured' Babyi
X
Chris Simkins
July 30, 2014 10:05 PM
A baby in the United States who was seemingly cured of HIV - after receiving powerful drugs at birth four years ago - recently tested positive for the virus that causes AIDS. The child, known as the "Mississippi baby," made international headlines a year ago when groundbreaking research about the case was announced, giving new hope for treatments that might lead to a cure for AIDS. But as VOA's Chris Simkins reports - despite the latest setback, U.S. researchers are redoubling efforts to put the virus into remission at birth.
Chris Simkins

A baby in the United States who was seemingly cured of HIV - after receiving powerful drugs at birth four years ago - recently tested positive for the virus that causes AIDS. 

The child, known as the "Mississippi baby," made international headlines a year ago when groundbreaking research about the case was announced, giving new hope for treatments that might lead to a cure for AIDS. Despite the latest setback, U.S. researchers are redoubling efforts to put the virus into remission at birth.

A year ago U.S. medical researchers were hopeful about possible new treatment options that could benefit the 250,000 children born each year with the virus that causes AIDS.  Dr. Hannah Gay made headlines for treating a Mississippi baby born to an HIV-infected mother four years ago.  The child was given three powerful HIV drugs immediately after birth and was thought to be cured of the virus.

But Gay and her colleagues got some bad news in early July after tests revealed the toddler is now HIV positive - after 27 months with no treatment.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says it’s part of trial and error.

"I do not mean to play down the disappointment, but when you are in the discovery phase of research you are going to fail more often than you succeed," he said.

Dr. Deborah Persaud of Johns Hopkins University, along with two of her colleagues, Dr. Hanna Gay and Katherine Luzuriaga, are overseeing research aimed at curing newborns of AIDS.  The New England Journal of Medicine published their groundbreaking research last year.  Undeterred by the latest setback, Persaud is back in the lab looking for answers.

"While our research is focused on the Mississippi baby’s treatment regimens, we have a broadened agenda in trying to figure out how to reach this state of viral admission or cure in affected children who were not fortunate enough to be able to benefit from a treatment strategy such as the Mississippi baby," she said.

Fauci says researchers now want to find out why HIV rebounded in the Mississippi baby and how the toddler was able to go so long with the virus in remission.

"So, something was keeping the virus suppressed," he said. "We need to know what that was and we also need to know what triggered it. But there is no guarantee we are going to get a cure; we may be faced with the fact that we do have to treat people indefinitely. We do not know that right now."

Fauci and other HIV /AIDS researchers say they have a lot more work to do to improve testing and treatment in their quest towards prolonged HIV remission in newborns and an eventual cure for AIDS.

You May Like

Obama: Alaskans Feel Signs of Climate Change

They're seeing bigger storm surges as sea ice melts, more wildfires, erosion of glaciers, shorelines More

Katrina Brought Enduring Changes to New Orleans

The city’s recovery is the result of the people and culture the city is famous for, as well as newcomers and start-up industries More

Magical Photo Slides Show Native Americans in Late 1800s

Walter McClintock spent 20 years photographing the Blackfoot Indians and their vanishing culture at the dawn of the modern age More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Joe Massoni from: Sonora ca
July 31, 2014 1:54 PM
Wow. Viruses are stronger than we know.
In Response

by: janebarrywhithe
August 08, 2014 9:22 PM
hello great universe, i am monic from south africa, i want to share a wonderful testimonies about the greatest dr who help me get cured from hiv disease, i was diagnosed two years ago with the result of hiv positive, i was so heart broken, and people, friends and family run away from me, i tried all the possible best i can but no avail, until i met a testimonial i metion internet about dr OGWUDIRE, i never believe internet, and i never i never believe that hiv has a cure, i decided to email some of emails i met there, but there was no avail, i emailed dr ogwudire and he told me that i should not have anything to worry about, if only i belive and have faith on him, that my cure will come in three days time, i put hope in his words, the other day, he called and told me that he has cast the spell through air that i should go for check up and which i did, and the dr confirm that there are some changes in me, and which i told dr ogwudire the hiv spell caster and he told me that the spell has already be working, that he need to buy some hiv items which he will use to deliver the cure to me, and he bought them and called me after some days and i went for check up again, and behold dr told me congratulations and i was overwhelmed and i called the great spell caster and he told me that i should not worrry that this is just the begining, the other he sent me some herbal medicines and he told me that i should take them so that it can cleanses and purify my body system, and i follow his words and took it for three days and i feel the changes with my own eyes,....thanks to dr ogwudire i am so happy and i will continue sharing more testimonies about you, email dr now on OGWUDIRESPELLCASTER@GMAIL.COM regards and warmth greetings from monic

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalatesi
X
August 27, 2015 2:08 AM
Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Is China's Economic Data Accurate?

Some investors say China's wild stock market gyrations have been made worse by worries about the reliability of that nation's economic data. And some critics say the reports can mislead investors by painting an unrealistically-strong picture of the economy. A key China scholar says Beijing is not fudging ((manipulating)) the numbers, but that the economy is evolving quickly from smoke-stack industries to services, and the ways of tracking new economic activity are falling behind the change. V
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Shipping Containers Provide Experimental Housing

Housing prices around the San Francisco Bay area are out of reach for many people, so some young entrepreneurs, artists and tech industry workers are creating their own houses using converted shipping containers. But as VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Oakland, the effort requires ingenuity and dealing with restrictive local laws.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video Technique May Eliminate Drill-and-Fill Dental Care

Many people dread visiting dentists because they're afraid of drills. Now, however, a technology developed by a British firm promises to eliminate the need for mechanical cleaning of dental cavities by speeding a natural process of tooth repair. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.
Video

Video French Experiment in Integrating Roma Under Threat

Plans to destroy France’s oldest slum have sparked an outcry on the part of its Roma residents. As Lisa Bryant reports from the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, rights groups argue the community is a fledgling experiment on integrating Roma who are often outcasts in many parts of Europe.
Video

Video Kenyans Turn to Agriculture for Business

Each year Kenyan universities continue to churn out graduates for the job market despite the already existing high rate of unemployment among youth in the country. Some of these young men and women have realized that agriculture can be as rewarding as any other business or job, and they are resorting to agribusiness in large numbers as a way of tackling unemployment. Rael Ombuor reports for VOA.
Video

Video First Women Graduate Elite Army Ranger School

Two women are making history for the U.S. Army by proving they are among the toughest of the tough. VOA's Carla Babb reports from Fort Benning, Georgia as 94 men and those two women rise as graduates of the difficult Ranger school.

VOA Blogs