The second person ever to be cured of HIV is still free of active virus more than two years on, a study published by medical journal The Lancet HIV revealed on Tuesday.
Two and a half years ago, Adam Castillejo — previously identified as the “London patient” — finished HIV antiretroviral therapy.
He underwent a stem cell transplant to treat lymphoma and his donor carried a mutation known as CCR5-delta 32, which made him resistant to HIV.
Researchers said that in treating his lymphoma, they believe Castillejo, now 40, was cured of HIV.
HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) is a life-long viral infection that attacks the body’s immune system and can have significant health consequences. There is no widely available cure, however, the virus is treatable with a combination of drugs known as antiretroviral therapy that reduces the amount of virus in a person’s blood and it is preventable by using PrEP, which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration in 2012.
According to UNAids there were 37.9 million people globally living with HIV in 2018.
“Our findings show that the success of stem cell transplantation as a cure for HIV, first reported nine years ago in the Berlin patient, can be replicated,” said Ravindra Gupta, lead author of the study and a professor in University of Cambridge’s clinical microbiology department.