Creating Resistance to HIV Via CRISPR
Source: The Scientist, Anna Azvolinsky
A minor proportion of people harbor a homozygous mutation in CCR5, a gene that encodes a receptor found on immune cells, that thwarts HIV's attempts to get inside the cells. In an attempt to mimic this natural resistance, researchers mutated CCR5 in human fetal liver hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells (HSPCs) and showed that the cells could block HIV infection after transplantation into mice.
It should be noted that targeting CCR5 may not lead to a complete cure, as the virus is not elimated and has the potential to target different receptors, e.g. CXRC4. Yet, for now, CCR5 remains the best target.
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