Mutated Gene Helps
A phase I trial involving 10 HIV-infected patients found that SB-728-T gene therapy lowered the viral load in three of the six participants who stopped taking their antiretroviral therapy during treatment for three months and was found to be safe. Almost all of them had a better immune system after one treatment and the virus that leads to AIDS could not be detected in one patient with one mutated CC5R gene. This gene makes the receptor used by HIV to enter the white blood cells it targets. Researchers believe there is a link with how mutated one or both copies of the CCR5 gene are and the viral load. One approach to treatment being considering is increasing how often cells' CC5R genes are modified to achieve a "functional cure" but how that can be done has to be figured out.