Scientists Discover Large Group of People Who Control HIV Without Meds

Scientists Discover Large Group of People Who Control HIV Without Meds

A group of scientists analyzing blood plasma samples from the Democratic Republic of Congo discovered that an unusually large proportion of people living with HIV in the country are elite controllers, meaning they’re able to suppress the virus to undetectable levels without taking HIV meds. Researchers hope that the finding will inspire further research in the areas of HIV treatment, cures and vaccines as scientists try to identify the biological mechanisms that allow these people to stay healthy and undetectable without meds. The oldest known strains of HIV derive from this region of Africa. The current cover of POZ magazine spotlights Loreen Willenberg, who is considered an “exceptional elite controller” because her HIV has not progressed in 25 years. For more, including her advocacy work, read “An Exception to the Rule” and the related article “How Some HIV Controllers Contain the Virus.” You can read the entire March 2021 issue here.

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