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Second Baby Possibly Cured Of HIV

Beatrice Verhoeven |
March 5, 2014 | 2:37 p.m. PST

Executive Producer

An HIV-infected T9 cell. (Creative Commons/Flickr user NIAID)
An HIV-infected T9 cell. (Creative Commons/Flickr user NIAID)

A baby girl may have been cured of the HIV virus, just four hours after birth. Doctors presented this medical miracle at an AIDS conference in Boston on Wednesday. This is the second time a baby might be cured of the virus. 

One month ago, doctors in Mississippi had announced that they had cured a baby of the virus for the first time ever. According to the Associated Press, the child is now 3.5 years old and is still HIV-free, although no treatment has been administered for two years. According to Popular Science, an anti-retroviral drug cocktail was used. 

Following the case in Mississippi, doctors have now possibly cured a second child: a Los Angeles-born infant. Doctors are not completely sure whether the virus is retreating, but once they are sure, doctors around the world will be able to rethink how fast and how early to cure HIV. 

According to the Associated Press, most HIV-infected mothers are given AIDS medicine during their pregnancy. In the Mississippi case, the mother was not taking her prenatal care and the evidence of the virus in the baby was discovered during labor. Doctors began treatment before tests could even determine that the baby was 100 percent infected. A few hours later, tests showed that the baby was indeed infected. Now, two years later, there seem to be no signs that the virus is still present in the baby's body, although the baby received no further medication

According to Popular Science, the HIV medication is usually administered to infected people, and once people stop taking the drugs, the virus reappears. The L.A. baby is still on medication so doctors cannot determine whether its been successfully cured yet.

Doctors are continuing their federally-funded study on 60 babies worldwide. The aggressive treatment will be discontinued if signs of HIV show no remission in two years. 

Reach Executive Producer Beatrice Verhoeven hereFollow her on Twitter. 



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