The first woman to receive a stem cell transplant to treat her HIV is still virus free, five years later.
It has also been 30 months since she stopped taking HIV medication.
Dr. Yvonne Bryson, director of the Los Angeles-Brazil AIDS Consortium at the University of California said at a press conference this week, “We’re calling this a possible cure rather than a definitive cure – basically waiting on a longer period of follow up.”
A handful of people have been cured of HIV, so right now there’s no official distinction between being cured and being in long-term remission according to Dr. Deborah Persaud, interim director of pediatric infectious diseases at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine who also oversaw the case with the dubbed “New York Patient.”
While the cure may not be definitive yet, it’s the greatest sign of hope that an HIV cure will soon be a treatment away.