What’s better? Cancer or HIV-1? well, if scientist get their way they may be able to modify the HIV-1 cell to actually seek and destroy cancer cells. That is, if the actual study and treatment goes according to plan.
The treatment is using a modified version of the HIV virus that is gutted of all damaging elements that makes it HIV. The only thing that the HIV virus is left with its the protein that actually seeks out T-cells. Once it finds the T-cells it infects the cells with cancer fighting genes that immediately turn them into cancer-fighting cells.
According to NY Times, one patient, a 65 year old male named William Ludwig, was given the treatment because he had very little and limited options due to leukemia. Once hew as given the treatment, the cancer was virtually destroyed within a couple of weeks. One year after his treatment, he’s still dancing around, figuratively speaking, New york times stated:
A year later, Mr. Ludwig is still in complete remission. Before, there were days when he could barely get out of bed; now, he plays golf and does yard work… Mr. Ludwig’s doctors have not claimed that he is cured — it is too soon to tell — nor have they declared victory over leukemia on the basis of this experiment, which involved only three patients. The research, they say, has far to go; the treatment is still experimental, not available outside of studies.
So yea, apparently we can now take the HIV virus and turn it into our ally. In the past few years we’ve had several people that claim their new drug will cure cancer, this is probably one of the first ones that actually worked as it was designed to work. Of course, they still need to do many more trials before the treatment can be considered a success, but this is a FANTASTIC Start!