A woman from Argentina has become the second person in the world to have naturally cured herself from HIV.
The second person on Earth to naturally rid themselves of HIV has just emerged. A woman from Argentina named Esperanza has officially become the second person ever to naturally cure themselves of the disease.
The second woman to naturally cure herself
After being diagnosed with HIV in 2013, the South American woman has tested negative for the virus eight years later with no traces of the disease in her blood. Similarly, August of las year saw 67-year-old Loreen Willenberg from San Francisco miraculously cure herself of HIV.
Dr. Natalia Laufer, Esperanza's doctor, explains that:
Finding one patient with this natural ability for functional cure [no virus that can reproduce] is good, but finding two means so much more. It means there must be more people like this out there. This is a significant leap forward in the world of HIV cure research. Upon diagnosis, her tests surprised us all.
Special immune systems
Researcher believe that the two patients who were able to overcome the disease naturally are 'elite controllers' meaning that they have a rare category of immune systems that have the ability to eliminate all traces of the disease in their blood without taking antiretroviral medication.
In standard cases, HIV gets into the DNA of a cell before rapidly multiplying and progressively killing one's body by attacking the immune system. But in the case of an elite controller, for reasons that are still unknown to scientists, nestles in an area of the genome where it lies dormant and does not evolve.
Scientists say that the case of the woman from Argentina will be essential for them to run tests on to ultimately be able to replicate her outcome in a lab for the end goal to be to find the much awaited cure of the virus that has currently infected over 10 million people worldwide.