This is the first time a treatment has cured HIV by eliminating the viral DNA from the genome of living animals.
There is no direct application of this specifically as PFS is not a virus, however it shows how exceptionally fast-moving this genomic level technology is, that already this has the potential to be a translatable cure for a disease that until the advent of these tools could only be suppressed. Just posting in case anyone else is interested.
…we employed a broad range of highly sensitive tests to evaluate HIV-1 elimination by LASER ART and AAV9-delivered CRISPR-Cas9 treatments. These included viral gene amplification, flow cytometry, adoptive viral transfers, on target and off target assays, and measures of viral rebound to demonstrate that combination therapies can safely lead to the elimination of HIV-1 infection. Results demonstrated that eradication of replication-competent HIV-1 present in infectious cell and tissue sites of infected animals can be achieved. Although reappearance of viremia in humans can be delayed, rebound occurs on average 2 to 4 weeks after ART interruption and 5 to 11 days in humanized mice. Despite the vigorous treatments offered, there was no evidence of outward untoward effects of any therapies including the persistence of human adult lymphocytes in mouse plasma and tissue. As such, these proof-of-concept results offer readily defined and realistic pathways toward strategies for HIV-1 elimination.