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Mixed couple
Nov 21, 2001

Dear Sir,

I have heard about people who have been having unprotected sex for more than two years when one is positive for almost ten years and the partner remain negative. This shows that, one who is negative is able to clear the virus whenever he/she is in contact with the one who has the virus. If the substance, which clears the virus, is in the blood, dont you think that the transfusion of the blood of the one who is negative can help in fighting the virus in the blood of one who is positive? Your comment will be highly appreciated.


Response from Dr. Remien

I can only "comment" since I am not a biological expert. While you're basic idea is a good one, unfortunately, it is not so simple. There are a number of hypotheses about why a person who is exposed to HIV remains negative and they include things such as viral load exposure being very low, a natural genetic immunity, a strong antibody response that is operating to prevent actual infection, an attenuated (weakened) virus, etc., etc. And a "lucky" couple may have more than one of these things happening. But I don't think any expert would say that a couple like this is immune to transmitting HIV between them. It may be that they've just been lucky, so far. Researchers have been studying this issue for a long time now and have looked for things in a person's blood that might be useful to someone already infected, and have even tried treatments like transfusion for people living with HIV. Unfortunately, I am not aware of any positive outcomes of such a study. The field of immunology is extremely complex and blood transfusions of one person to another has not yielded the positive effects you are hoping for.

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