In patients being treated for HIV, virions are controlled in viral reservoirs; when these reservoirs reactivate (due to, e.g., drug resistance or treatment interruption) and viral load rises, it is known as viral rebound. Managing HIV requires daily pills, leaving patients at risk of viral rebound when anything from war to natural disasters to stigma interrupts their treatment. We have joined a coalition from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a cure that will allow patients to control viral reservoirs long-term with their own immune systems long-term. This requires a deeper understanding of viral reservoirs, plus a test to predict viral rebound so that subjects in clinical trials can safely be taken off treatment. We are developing a multiplexed assay to probe the viral reservoir and predict viral rebound.
Funding: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation