Stem Cell Therapy for AIDS- Disease Team Planning
RNA interference is a naturally occurring means to block the function of genes in our body. We propose that RNA interference can be used to block HIV-1 infection and its reproduction within the body. When RNA interference is introduced into a stem cell, its blocking activity will be present throughout the lifetime of the stem cell, theoretically the lifespan of a human being. Thus, in theory an effective stem cell RNA interference therapy will require only a single treatment as opposed to the current lifetime administration of anti-HIV-1 drugs often accompanied by serious side effects. In nature, some individuals carry a genetic mutation that renders them resistant to HIV-1 infection. This mutation prevents HIV-1 from attaching to the white blood cells. One RNA interference approach will be to mimic this natural situation by blocking the activity of this "co-receptor" within infected individuals by creating a new blood system that carries the RNA interference therapy. Other RNA interference therapies will be directed against genes of HIV-1 itself.
University of California, Los Angeles
Disease Team Planning