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  • Hope?

    http://www.sltrib.com/business/ci_3482712

    Researchers, including a BYU scientist, believe they have found a new compound that could finally kill the HIV/AIDS virus, not just slow it down as current treatments do.

    And, unlike the expensive, drug cocktails 25 years of research have produced for those with the deadly virus, the compound invented by Paul D. Savage of Brigham Young University appears to hunt down and kill HIV.
    [squadl]
    "I am the prettiest african-american, vietnamese..cong..person." -SugarNCamo

  • #2
    Re: Hope?

    I hope this time it will be different because many new anti-viral agents hit the headlines with a similar hope.

    As the article points out, there are still a lot of things to do (confirmation by different labs and on different strains, characterization of target and mechanism, phase I, II and III tests, etc)

    The problem with anti-viral drugs is the extremely fast mutation rate in viral genomes (=DNA or RNA). For example, if the target for this agent is a surface protein on the viral particles and if the gene coding for that protein is undergoing mutations producing different versions of the protein, you end up with a different target for which your drug is no longer working against.

    Lets hope that the target is a crucial conserved structure of the virus so that there is little or no room for it to change.

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    • #3
      Re: Hope?

      Guess i wont be needing any of these.

      But to be serious, i doubt its really the cure. I bet we're a long way off even IF theres a cure.

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      • #4
        Re: Hope?

        Originally posted by John CANavar
        The problem with anti-viral drugs is the extremely fast mutation rate in viral genomes (=DNA or RNA). For example, if the target for this agent is a surface protein on the viral particles and if the gene coding for that protein is undergoing mutations producing different versions of the protein, you end up with a different target for which your drug is no longer working against.

        Lets hope that the target is a crucial conserved structure of the virus so that there is little or no room for it to change.
        Even so, if the company has to release a new "vaccine" every year, that's better than the options available now.
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        • #5
          Re: Hope?

          What studies to date show is a compound that attacks HIV at its molecular membrane level, disrupting the virus from interacting with their primary targets, the "T-helper" class white blood cells that comprise and direct the human immune system. Further, CSAs appear to be deadly to all known strains of HIV....

          ...In addition to being a potential checkmate to HIV, the compounds show indications of being just as effective against other diseases plaguing humankind - among them influenza, possibly even the dread bird flu, along with smallpox and herpes.
          Those are some very impressive claims.

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          • #6
            Re: Hope?

            Originally posted by John CANavar
            The problem with anti-viral drugs is the extremely fast mutation rate in viral genomes (=DNA or RNA). For example, if the target for this agent is a surface protein on the viral particles and if the gene coding for that protein is undergoing mutations producing different versions of the protein, you end up with a different target for which your drug is no longer working against.
            While viruses do mutate faster, there's ultimately little to no difference between anti-virals and anti-bacterials. Eventually something that worked for 50 years will stop working due to mutation, and we'll have to find something new that works. Aside from that, there's always the threat of completely new and devastating diseases appearing from out of nowhere.

            Regardless, it'd be nice to see this work. A few thoughts though, if it does. How costly will the treatment be? If HIV/AIDS was cured, would we see a rise in other STD's or pregnancy because people think they can go protectionless? We definitely need a cure, but the side effects of said cure give me a bit of pause.
            [squadl]
            "I am the prettiest african-american, vietnamese..cong..person." -SugarNCamo

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