According to the CDC, in 2006, 575,000 died from AIDS. An astounding 56,300 Americans became infected that same year. The total number of people living with the diagnosis was 1,106,400. The study from the CDC had predicted one of two things. An extreme step up in prevention of HIV/AIDS, or a continued rate of 55,000 people newly infected every year. These are some very scary numbers.
How People Perceive HIV/AIDS Today
It almost seems that with the wonderful new treatments allowing patients to sustain a longer, more “normal” life almost complacency set in with people. Before these drugs were discovered, people appeared to be more frightened, and rightly so, of this insidious disease. All the while though, researchers have been tirelessly searching for an actual cure. This cure may come in the form of a protein called TRIM5a. Not a moment to soon, as the numbers of infected people grow steadily every year.
What Promise TRIM5a Has Shown So Far
According to Science Daily, researchers have discovered that this protein, TRIM5a, destroys the HIV virus in Rhesus monkeys naturally. This shows great promise for humans, as this virus is linked to humans originally by the African Green Monkey, according to the National Institute of health.
The Difference Between TRIM5a in the Rhesus Monkey and Humans
Both the Rhesus monkey and humans carry this protein. The difference is, it has been shown that this protein, effectively on its own destroys the HIV virus in the Rhesus monkey. However, in humans it does not on its own. This does not mean all is lost though. With the research being done now on how TRIM5a destroys the HIV virus in the rhesus monkey, researchers now finally have a lead, a starting point. Now researchers can work on altering this protein to treat humans to effectively stop HIV in its tracks.
This brings new hope for the world battling this epidemic for so long. This is a very promising discovery. Although it may take some time to develop it into a cure for humans, it is well worth it. As it is, no campaigns, no amount of education on the matter seems to be stopping people from engaging in seriously dangerous activities that end in lives lost and billions of dollars spent in health care.