The drug's main active ingredient is a peptide that was developed by scientists at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The drug's main active ingredient is a peptide that was developed by scientists at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem. The drug's main active ingredient is a peptide that was developed by scientists at The Hebrew University in Jerusalem. (Photo: Romaset/Shutterstock)

Breakthrough drug could offer cure for HIV and AIDS

In test trials, the drug decreased the HIV virus count 97 percent.

There's new hope of a cure for HIV and AIDS thanks to a breakthrough drug being tested by scientists at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

The Israeli scientists, Abraham Loyter and Assaf Friedler, put the drug into test tubes containing the blood of 10 AIDS patients and found the HIV virus count in the blood samples was reduced by as much as 97 percent, Israeli media reported.

Currently HIV and AIDS patients have to rely on a cocktail of drugs to treat the virus.Currently HIV and AIDS patients have to rely on a cocktail of drugs to treat the virus. (Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The two scientists announced in January that they would begin tests of the drug, which they believe can kill infected cells without harming the entire body, thus curing the HIV carrier.

“With our approach,” Loyter said, “we are destroying the cells, so there is no chance that the virus will awaken one day, because there are no cells, there will be no cells that contain the virus.”

The active ingredient in the drug is a peptide that was developed by the scientists. The peptide causes several copies of the virus’s DNA to enter the infected cell, instead of just one copy, which causes the cell to self-destruct.

The cocktail of drugs used to treats AIDS today can stem the growth of the virus, but cannot eliminate it completely, and patients continue to be carriers of the virus even after overcoming it.

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