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HIV on Trial: An Attempt to Cure the World’s Smallest Patients

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New global clinical trial aims to replicate the mysterious “Mississippi baby” success. When an infant born with HIV was reportedly “cured” of the disease it seemed too good to be true. The success, detailed by researchers in March 2013 and later published in The New England Journal of Medicine, ignited hope that other babies could benefit from the same aggressive drug regimen that the infant received. Through a series of rare circumstances the so-called “Mississippi baby” began standard HIV treatment 30 hours after birth, but the potent drug cocktail regimen was abruptly halted when the child was 18 months old. Surprisingly, even after treatment stopped the child’s blood plasma continued to show no signs of the virus. The baby is now more than three years old and remains seemingly disease-free. But exactly how that child bested the virus that causes AIDS remains a mystery.

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