From HIV+ to Virus-Free After Marrow Transplant: The Implications

September 14, 2012

For two HIV-positive patients, treatments with bone marrow transplants for cancer have achieved eradication of the virus from their blood cells. Learn in this podcast what this portends for the future.

Two HIV-positive cancer patients treated in Boston have been rendered virus-free after bone marrow transplants, helped by antiretroviral treatments they received before the transplants. The public news media may tout this as a “cure”, but does it really point the way toward the eradication of HIV as a public threat? What meaning, if any, does it have for your patients, present or future? In this recorded interview, one of the doctors who treated the fortunate pair at Brigham and Women’s Hospital describes the treatment, the outcome, and the practical implications.

Daniel R. Kuritzkes is Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

From HIV+ to Virus-Free After Marrow Transplant: The Implications

Questions:

Please tell us about your two patients who received bone marrow transplants and now show no detectable sign of HIV in their blood cells, not just their plasma.

What kind of implications does this have for future treatment?

Obviously we can’t give bone marrow transplants to everyone with HIV. Do you see any practical application for this in the near future.

What should primary care physicians take away from this?

Further information:

Studies Hint at Strategies to Cure AIDSMedPage Today, July 27, 2012