Year : 2007 | Volume
: 25 | Issue : 2 | Page : 64-
HIV - Interpreted, intervened, interrupted . . .?
Editor-in-Chief, JISPPD, Nair Hospital Dental College, Dr. A. L. Nair Road, Mumbai Central, Mumbai - 400 008, India
S G Damle
Editor-in-Chief, JISPPD, Nair Hospital Dental College, Dr. A. L. Nair Road, Mumbai Central, Mumbai - 400 008
|How to cite this article:|
Damle S G. HIV - Interpreted, intervened, interrupted . . .?.J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent 2007;25:64-64
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Damle S G. HIV - Interpreted, intervened, interrupted . . .?. J Indian Soc Pedod Prev Dent [serial online] 2007 [cited 2020 Jan 29 ];25:64-64
Available from: http://www.jisppd.com/text.asp?2007/25/2/64/33449
The spread of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) across the world has taken all of us by surprise. HIV infection in humans has now gained pandemic proportions. More than 25 million people have died due to this unsparing disease since it was first recognized in 1981, making it the most destructive pandemic recorded in history. The Indian scenario of HIV/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) is very grim. According to the HIV Sentinel Surveillance Survey report (2006), India has an estimated 5.1 million individuals living with HIV/AIDS and a prevalence of 0.91%.
HIV is a retrovirus that causes AIDS, in which the host immune system begins to fail leading to development of life-threatening opportunistic infections. The discovery of anti-retroviral drugs and development of the highly active anti-retroviral therapy has given hope to millions of people across the globe. The current treatment modality focuses on suppressing HIV in order to delay the onset of AIDS and prolonging the life of the infected patients. This treatment method cannot remove the virus from the body.
As a major breakthrough in our battle against HIV/AIDS, a team of scientists has found an enzyme 'Tre Recombinase' that can remove the viral DNA from the infected host cell in infected tissue cultures. Research on this novel approach against the menace of HIV is underway at the Max Planck Institute, University of Hamburg. Although the enzyme is still far from use as a treatment option, it offers a ray of hope to the HIV-infected individuals worldwide. Hurdles that the enzyme will have to face before it can be used in humans include the establishment of safety, efficacy and methods to efficiently deliver the enzyme for its optimal function. Nevertheless, the enzymatic approach might form a useful basis for the development of future anti-HIV therapies.
The ultimate aim in the management of HIV/AIDS is the development of an effective anti-HIV vaccine as it would be an affordable option, independent of patient compliance, and serve as a means of primary prevention of HIV. However, the development of an effective anti-HIV vaccine has eluded researchers due to the highly mutagenic nature of HIV. Hence, although we have partly interpreted this disease and showed promises in intervening its progress, we are still far from its successful interruption.