HIV Controllers: A Potential Model for HIV Eradication

Investigator: Steven Deeks, MD
Sponsor: American Foundation for AIDS Research (AmFAR)

Location(s): United States


HIV controllers: a potential model for HIV eradication: A very small proportion of all people infected with HIV can achieve durable control of the virus without using antiretroviral therapy. Dr. Deeks has identified about 50 people – “elite controllers” – who test HIV-positive and yet whose levels of virus are below the limits of detection using standard laboratory techniques. He will test his hypothesis that these individuals harbor virus that is defective such that it is incapable of reproducing. If this is the case, he will study which genetic alterations in the virus make it replication-incompetent and how those mutations may have arisen. Dr. Deeks’s goal is to determine whether “natural eradication” of HIV is possible.