Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate September 2001

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Fletcher Watson Aids Summary May 4, 2001 Hope for AIDS Cure Fades Scientists now believe that the HIV virus cannot be killed. HIV is a resourceful virus that now only infects blood cells but also injects its DNA into the code of memory t-cells. Now that this has been figured out, previous "miracle" drugs that scientists though could eradicate the HIV virus are now just a drug to help cope with living with AIDS.

In 1996,Dr. David Ho developed a drug that stopped the spreading of the HIV virus into new blood cells. This was thought as a turning point in the cure for AIDS, but they then found out that the virus integrated its DNA into memory t-cell DNA. The virus integrating its DNA into t-cell DNA makes it almost impossible for the body's immune system to wipe out these cells because the t-cells look perfectly normal. These t-cells then reproduce with the DNA for HIV reproduced with it.

When the virus is triggered to make new viruses, the memory t-cell then turns into a virus making factory and more HIV viruses are produced leaving the t-cell dead. These new viruses infect more cells and then hide from the drugs in the body immune system.

The virus' ability to hide in the human immune system makes it almost impossible for "revolutionary" drugs to completely kill off HIV. Also, HIV's ability to hide in cells that will not die quickly also contributes to the unlikeliness of finding a cure for AIDS. Even if we can kill off viral hiding and reproduction in t-cells, how do we know that HIV does not hide in other hard to kill areas such as the brain. Many scientists now believe that finding a cure for AIDS may never come, but they think...