Jan 13, 2002
Can you give your opinion on this:
Ottawa researchers at the Ottawa Hospital announced this week that a naturally occurring protein can reduce the level of HIV to undetectable levels in dormant cells that hide from other drugs. The team tested a molecule developed by Seattle-based Immunex Corporation called TRAIL, or tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand. This is a protein produced by the body's immune cells.
Response from Dr. Cohen
The field of research is always in search of new compounds to stop this virus. This report is one of a few that does document a possible lead. And it will be followed up - to see if the initial test tube studies are followed by promising clinical results. And that is where we are with this and other leads.
And it is sad to report that a few leads such as this don't work. Something goes wrong. The side effects get in the way. Or the dose we need to give to get the benefit is just not tolerable. Or some other bodily system kicks in to blunt the potential benefit. And so on. But some of these do work out. And it will take awhile to know which category this is in. The researchers at that Hospital hopefully with have some added studies in animals, and then in people to have answers.
And all in all, it is just a sign of hope that researchers can find another angle to control this pest. And some of these do work out... so stay tuned.
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