Search­ing for HIV cure, Gilead­'s new 'shock and kil­l' com­bo swats back lethal virus in mon­keys

A promi­nent group of sci­en­tif­ic in­ves­ti­ga­tors has tak­en an­oth­er step to­ward a pos­si­ble even­tu­al cure for HIV — one of the longest and most dif­fi­cult trails in drug R&D — us­ing a com­bo drug from Gilead.

While com­bi­na­tion ther­a­pies have long proven able to keep HIV locked in­to hid­den cel­lu­lar reser­voirs, elim­i­nat­ing those vi­ral pock­ets has proven to be dev­il­ish­ly dif­fi­cult. In a new an­i­mal study in­volv­ing rhe­sus mon­keys, though, re­searchers at Har­vard work­ing at Beth Is­rael Dea­coness Med­ical Cen­ter ad­vanced a lengthy ef­fort in pur­su­ing a “shock and kill” strat­e­gy us­ing a toll-like re­cep­tor com­bined with a killer an­ti­body.

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