Crouse Health Online: Wellness is just a click away.
Share Share
  |  Connect with Us: 
Text Size

Health News

'Superinfected' Patients Give Clues to Fighting HIV

'Superinfected' Patients Give Clues to Fighting HIV


THURSDAY, March 29 (HealthDay News) -- A stronger immune response occurs in women who have been infected with two different strains of HIV by two different sexual partners than in women infected with one strain of HIV, a new study finds.

This type of dual infection is called HIV "superinfection."

The finding that a mixture of different HIV strains may be one way to trigger a more powerful immune system antibody response may prove useful in efforts to develop an HIV vaccine in the fight against AIDS, according to the researchers at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

The researchers tracked the immune activity of 12 superinfected women in Kenya for five years. Compared to singly infected women, the superinfected women had about 70 percent more neutralizing antibodies (agents the immune system uses to fight invaders) and their antibodies' ability to neutralize HIV was almost 50 percent stronger.

The study appears online March 29 in the journal PLoS Pathogens.

"We found that women who had been infected twice not only had more potent antibody responses, but some of these women had 'elite' antibody activity, meaning that they had a broad and potent ability to neutralize a wide variety of strains of HIV over a sustained period of time," senior author Julie Overbaugh said in a research center news release.

Only about 1 percent of HIV-infected people are "elite neutralizers," the authors noted.

"Individuals who become superinfected with a second virus from a different partner represent a unique opportunity for studying the antibody response and may provide insights into the process of developing broad neutralizing antibodies that could inform HIV-vaccine design," Overbaugh said.

It is estimated that more than 1.1 million Americans have HIV and someone becomes newly infected about every 10 minutes, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Many experts consider an HIV vaccine to be the best way to offer long-term protection against HIV but efforts to develop such a vaccine have achieved only limited success.

More information

The New Mexico AIDS Education and Training Center has more about HIV/AIDS vaccination.

Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.


Latest News

Crouse Hospital Appoints Chief Information Officer
more >

MedEx Bedside Prescription Delivery Service

Free service offers convenience, patient education at discharge.
more >

Weight Loss Surgery

Is it right for you? Attend a free information seminar held twice monthly.
more >

Quality at Crouse

See how Crouse Hospital strives to provide the best in patient care.
more >

Cheer Up That Special Someone

Say get well or welcome a new arrival with a gift purchased right at Crouse.

more >

Make an Online Donation Now

Your donation of any amount helps support Crouse services & programs in a meaningful way.
more >

Shop Online Now

Say get well, thinking of you or welcome new baby with a unique gift from the Crouse Gift Shop.

more >