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Human genes may
kill HIV

Human genes may
kill HIV

Genes that repair human DNA may kill HIV genetic material.

A study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests that two key human genes may have the ability to destroy HIV genetic material inside immune system cells. The study, conducted by researchers at Ohio State University, shows that genes XPB and XPD, which work in the body to repair damaged or faulty human DNA, also work to destroy HIV genetic material by degrading viral DNA. The researchers say that their discovery suggests the proteins could provide a natural defense against HIV infection and could lead to new treatments for HIV disease.

"Our findings identify a new drug target, one that involves a natural host defense," researcher Richard Fishel told BBC News. "HIV treatments that target cellular components should be far less likely to develop resistance." (The Advocate)

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