When will there be a cure for HIV?
Thanks for your answer to my previous question.
I have managed to convince my girlfriend who tested HIV positive not to commit suicide. I told her to take medications for the next few years.
I told her that i was convinced that there would be a cure in the next few years. Are my hopes justified?
In your opinion how long do you think it would take to find a cure if any?
What websites give such information?
Learning that you have HIV can be tough. But while coming to term with this it should help to know that current treatment means that most people can lead long, normal, lives.
We can do the same things we did in life before we had HIV. This includes sport, work, getting married and having children. Some people even say that finding out they were HIV positive meant that they valued life more than they did before.
Some people make changes in their lives for the better, in ways they might not have done otherwise. Life may be slightly more complicated with HIV, but access to good treatment allows all these things.
When someone is first diagnosed they may not have information, or they may not believe it. This is why access to accurate information is so important.
As for a cure, I’m sure it will come. In the last five years there has been a dramatic increase in this research. Scientists are making great progress in working on all the sections of this very complex problem.
Science has a way of solving most problems. If not now, then it will happen in the future. But putting a timeline on when is tough. Many of the leading scientists are cautious on this. Many suggest at least ten years is reasonable but an unexpected breakthough could change this.
One part of the challenge for HIV is that the virus becomes part of the genetic material (DNA) of immune cells. Some of these cells, once infected, rest or sleep for many years. Currently HIV drugs only work in cells that are active or awake, but research is looking at ways of targeting those sleeping cells.
This article describes new approaches to cure research:
Even if a cure is a long way off it is not something that I worry about. It will come, and treatment will keep me healthy and alive until then. Following research is a good was to keep informed – both for newer treatments and for research into vaccines and ‘a cure’.
Most HIV organisations have newsletters that report on research from medical conferences. If you email me with which country you live in I can suggest something that may be useful.
Note: The answer was updated in September 2014 from a question asked in August 2007.