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Engineered Stem Cells Seek Out and Kill HIV In Mice

samzenpus posted about 2 years ago | from the wipe-out dept.

Biotech 95

An anonymous reader writes "Expanding on previous research providing proof-of-principle that human stem cells can be genetically engineered into HIV-fighting cells, a team of UCLA researchers have now demonstrated that these cells can actually attack HIV-infected cells in a living organism. From the article: 'This most recent study shows that scientists can manipulate stem cells — immature cells that can develop into any type of cell — by implanting genes, turning it into killer T cells which can kill the virus in living mice. While the mouse form of HIV is not exactly the same as it is in humans, the infection and progression closely mimic the virus in humans, and eliminating it is a huge step forward, researchers said.'"

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95 comments

First (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695011)

I knew stem cells had to be good for something.

Re:First (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695045)

Yeah, you hear all kinds of controversy over them, but you never hear what they actually do. It's always, "we injected him full of stem cells then... BAM! he's cured!:

Re:First (3, Insightful)

Mithent (2515236) | about 2 years ago | (#39695645)

A lot of "we injected him with stem cells!" is rather questionable, something akin to throwing some parts into a car's engine bay if it stops working. Sure, the parts might potentially be useful, but they're not necessarily the right ones, nor will they necessarily end up in the right places. There's certainly potential for future stem-cell based therapies, but most things that you can get done in clinics today are of dubious benefit.

Re:First (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 2 years ago | (#39698971)

The difference is that you can NEVER throw a lump of ore into your crankcase lube and have it turn into an oil pickup foot, but stem cells seem to self-differentiate into precisely what is needed in an astounding number of cases.

Don't try to make automotive analogies, you understand neither automobiles nor stem cells sufficiently

Re:First (1)

Mithent (2515236) | about 2 years ago | (#39702705)

Naturally my analogy was an exaggeration, and like most analogies has its flaws. But I do understand stem cells; I'm currently doing a PhD in biology that relates to stem cells and differentiation. I'm certainly aware of the potential that stem cell-based therapies have, but they ought to be done in a controlled and experimentally-validated manner, not just injecting some cells into humans and hoping they help. They might be beneficial - this needs to be properly studied - but they might do nothing, or even risk causing other pathologies or even cancer.

This [scienceblogs.com] gives some thoughts on the subject, and this [nih.gov] is a recent review article on the risks associated with various therapies.

Re:First (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#39696429)

I think you meant "artificially manipulated stem cells" or something along those lines, since your cells all came from your own, "natural" stem cells.

Not going to happen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695013)

It is more likely that huge Pharmacy companies and the Vatican will build a working economy in Africa so they can profit even more from AIDS.

News like this and the people behind it will be played down.

captcha: vomited

Re:Not going to happen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695117)

I vomited when I read the shit coming from your keyboard. If you don't like the system then ante up and work to change it instead of crying like a bitch.

Re:Not going to happen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695175)

>If you don't like the system then ante up and work to change it

hahaha... HAHAHAHAHA...

Re:Not going to happen (2, Funny)

Dutchmaan (442553) | about 2 years ago | (#39695185)

...a conspiracy theorist and a catholic walk into a slashdot bar...

Re:Not going to happen (2, Funny)

debilo (612116) | about 2 years ago | (#39695439)

....and the Catholic says to the conspiracy theorist "Are you underage?" and he says "No." and the Catholic says "Burn in hell."

Re:Not going to happen (4, Funny)

Mr2cents (323101) | about 2 years ago | (#39695943)

Clearly this shows that Douglas Adams was correct in his view that mice run this world. We can't cure ourselves, but we spend billions trying to cure mice. Can't you people see what's going on here? They have all the best medicine, we're lagging behind by decades!

Waste of money (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695025)

Let's see, we know exactly how to prevent AIDs, cancer is still a mystery.

So let's waste resources on AIDS rather than cancer.

Too bad AIDs gets all the pub.

Re:Waste of money (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695051)

Grow up. Life does not revolve around your needs and any disease (be it cancer, HIV, etc.) that gets attention is better than none at all and sorry that it's not on your terms that it's being researched. Perhaps you should get off your duff and go to college and do some of the research on your own instead of passing blame to someone else.

Re:Waste of money (-1, Flamebait)

Hentes (2461350) | about 2 years ago | (#39695469)

Look on the bright side, with the number of bleeding heart immoral liberals the waste won't really stop until they find a cure. So if this really is a cure, that could be the end of it.

Re:Waste of money (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | about 2 years ago | (#39696465)

we know exactly how to prevent AIDs

And yet there are 34 million people worldwide with HIV, including over 300k children, and the disease is still spreading. [avert.org] You may take that as "Well since it's preventable, I don't have to care" if you wish. The rest of us take that as "Still a major problem to be solved."

Re:Waste of money (5, Insightful)

postbigbang (761081) | about 2 years ago | (#39697439)

Go ahead and try to prevent it. Seems pretty tough to do. Let's, while were at it, prevent people from driving drunk, killing others in rage, and war.

People behave as they will behave. Some get HIV in ways that don't involve sex, although these are rare they are statistically significant.

Sex drives people, and they do it unprotected by condoms and common sense. This is who we are. So is cancer. We know a few things that can easily start it. A few things that can prevent it. A few things that cure it.

People still die from either one. Both need a cure. You're absolutely right: still a major problem to be solved.

Re:Waste of money (2)

jd.schmidt (919212) | about 2 years ago | (#39701019)

Sorry I got to call BS on this. In fact we have been able to reduce Drunk Driving, domestic murders and other problems through education and social planning.

While I am totally in support of scientific research on AIDS and other diseases of mankind (I sure like money spent on that more than on bombs!), We in fact have known everything we need to greatly mitigate or even stop AIDS for years. Most of the countries that have the worst problem in many cases do because their societies didn't catch the clue train and denied the causes of AIDS. And no, I am not advocating abstinence only solutions.

Denying this is to very bad for society, education and people learning to modify their behavior IS one of our best tools to fight this epidemic at the moment!
.

Re:Waste of money (0)

postbigbang (761081) | about 2 years ago | (#39701189)

Part of that same cluetrain is as obvious as the nose on your face. People, even in the town where you live, have sex without condoms.

I live in a college town. Every day of the week, unrelentingly, there are at least a half dozen DUIs. Yet every single student got the same intake video, and most more, about the dangers of drinking and driving.

You can make laws against murder, with hideous penalties, and people will still kill each other. Don't be a fool: the existence of a cluetrain is largely irrelevant as to whether people will jump on, off, or ignore it.

In the case of HIV, many people carrying it have no idea that they're infected, and infecting others; there are some people with DNA that don't get infected by the major strain of HIV. There are those that got transfusions that were tainted. There are those that still give blood not knowing their HIV status.

Education? Important, a clearly important road to knowledge and use of it. Social planning? A great form of education. Together, a powerful weapon. And that weapon flies in the face of erections, drunkenness, a thumbnail of meth, and so forth. Most of the statistical population of HIV+ people will need drugs, and many will have to fight AID, ARC, and a lifetime of guarding against hideous deaths by infection and the side effects of the drugs used to keep T-cell counts high, and virus loads low. This is the cluetrain: as Vonnegut might say, we're all meat humans, and we behave that way. That's not an citation to excuse pernicious behavior; instead, it's a way to help you understand that cluefulness is your gift, and perhaps not the gift of others. The clued-in have a moral obligation to assuage the effects of those that for whatever reasons, entered death row.

Re:Waste of money (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39697571)

How many billions of dollars spent so people can fuck each other in the ass with impunity?

Re:Waste of money (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39699345)

I'm pretty sure that

a) the money wasn't spent so anybody could fuck anybody else in the arse, and

b) You're both a homophobe and a moron.

Many guys fuck their girlfriends in the arse, right after moaning about gays who fuck men in the arse. Seems a bit stupid to me, much like you.

Re:Waste of money (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39698261)

You haven't been following nutrition-related developments of late.

A growing stream of evidence is showing that a number of modern-time pathologies (obesity, type-2 diabetese, many if not most types of cancer, and possibly Alzheimer) correlate strongly with an excessive (and still growing) consumption of processed fructose -- aka table sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, fruit juice, candy bars, cakes ice cream, etc.

http://www.uctv.tv/skinny%2Don%2Dobesity/

Re:Waste of money (1)

mug funky (910186) | about 2 years ago | (#39698285)

i'll cure your troll by feeding it...

has it occurred to you that there's many scientists in this world, and most of them work on different things?

if they ALL worked on what you thought was the most worthy cause, there'd be enough redundancy to warrant a big ol rant from you about wasted tax money and why can't they all work on different things...

Great. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695031)

But when will it help us? I keep hearing about all this cool shit, but it's just so hard waiting for it...

If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (5, Insightful)

dryriver (1010635) | about 2 years ago | (#39695055)

Then much kudos/applause to the scientists who make this happen. Its about time that the mega-nastiness that is HIV/AIDS becomes curable, and I hope that the disease/virus will hopefully be eradicated completely from this planet some day. (On a slightly sentimental note, it is too bad that thousands of lab-mice/-rats have had to suffer all kinds of pains in various science-labs over the decades, just so that we humans can overcome common diseases. Maybe some lab-rat/lab-mice statues should be errected in a few town squares somewhere, so that we become conscious of where our medical cures come from...)

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695215)

This technique should also be applicable to a lot of other viruses that are hard to fully eliminate in the human body. I have high hopes for it in the coming decades.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695235)

I wouldn't count on this being a cure. More likely it will just be a better treatment. One of the reasons that HIV is so hard to cure is that it "hides" by infecting cells that then lie dormant for a long time before they start producing new HIV. This means that even if you can kill all of the active HIV virus, new ones will pop up in the apparently cured patient. I would expect that this treatment would have the same drawback.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (4, Insightful)

tragedy (27079) | about 2 years ago | (#39695599)

This treatment is meant to actually kill off the infected cells before they spread more HIV around the body. Combining this with anti-retrovirals might actually be able to wipe all of the HIV out of a patients body. At least it's a step in that direction.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

lorenlal (164133) | about 2 years ago | (#39696195)

What I find most interesting about this approach, manipulating stem cells to generate many more killer T cells feel a lot like using cancer to fight HIV... Yes, it's a controlled cancer (maybe?)... Think the reversal of http://xkcd.com/938/ [xkcd.com]

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

AdrianKemp (1988748) | about 2 years ago | (#39699285)

You understand precisely nothing of what's happening here.

They are creating a specified number of cells that know how to fight the HIV virus, because your normal immune system can't differentiate well enough.

This is exactly nothing like the xkcd you posted.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39697595)

Dr.:"Congratulations, we've killed all the AIDS virus in your body."

Guy: "Cool! I'm going to a bath house now and fuck people in the ass and get it up the ass too!"

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39697739)

And I can send my kids to the choir too!

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

mug funky (910186) | about 2 years ago | (#39698303)

yes, this is the _only_ vector the virus spreads by.

bath house... seriously, are you still living in the '70s?

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39699321)

Fucking people in the ass, unprotected, is the _primary_ vector for the spread of AIDs in the U.S.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (2)

Thiez (1281866) | about 2 years ago | (#39695635)

I can't really be bothered to RTFA, but depending on their approach you may end up with memory T-cells afterwards, which would mean the immune system would reactivate whenever the virus makes a return. In effect, you would acquire an immunity.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

michelcolman (1208008) | about 2 years ago | (#39698237)

Yes, if you believe the hundreds of Slashdot articles that have claimed a new cure for cancer or HIV, you would expect both diseases to have been eradicated a long time ago. "We've engineered new T-cells that only attack cancer cells" - "We've got a new quantum laser that homes in on cancer cells and leaves all other cells intact" - "We've mutated a species of larvae from the Brazilian Rainforest to eat HIV". But somehow. people are still dying many years after those breakthrough discoveries.

I'll believe it when I see it.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (2)

silentcoder (1241496) | about 2 years ago | (#39698451)

It takes a very long time and a lot of money to go from concept to cure. Generally many, many years of testing and research. Often research that shows promise early on fades out later as it's found to have bad side-effects or be less effective in primates - so not everything pans out. Many times if more than one vector is followed then a good approach may simply be finished too late and another (that isn't better - just as good) is ready sooner.
The process takes long with very good reason - all that testing is there to ensure that the medicines we produce are safe to use. There's no point in a medicine that cures a disease perfectly if 80% of the patients get killed by the treatment. Sometimes bad side effects are still acceptable if they offer a cure or an improved quality of life while dying (chemo for cancer patients for example) but if chemo killed 50% of it's takers in a day it wouldn't seem a worthwhile trade-off anymore now would it ?

Slashdot by nature of it's audience reports the research as it happens - often years (perhaps decades) from a commercial cure being available. That doesn't mean this work is something shrug off. The fact that we have so many different avenues for attacking HIV and cancer being researched right now is a good thing. It means if any one of them is going to pay off we'll get the results. Less research funds would mean that less ideas can be tested.
It could take a while before any of these researchers get results - but that doesn't mean it isn't good that they are doing research, and that we shouldn't be aware of it.
Not all of it will pay off - but history suggests that some of it will.

Basically what all this means is that we will probably see cures for two of the biggest killers in the world today within our lifetimes. Perhaps not in time to save our parents, but certainly in time to save our children.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

michelcolman (1208008) | about 2 years ago | (#39698601)

I know it takes a long time for a cure to be fully tested and available, but many of these articles make it seem like the treatment works and will cure the disease, and then a decade later it turns out not to be the case. This one was about HIV in mice, but not long ago there was one about leucemia in actual humans, 9 out of 10 would be cured or something like that, and I've been reading articles like this for more than a decade. Meanwhile my grandmother died of leucemia and the doctors said there was nothing they could do. So yes, I'm a bit sceptical about all these spectacular results because they are often grossly exaggerated. They usually morph from "we can cure cancer" to "we've got another cure that might make someone live a little bit longer if he's lucky".

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

silentcoder (1241496) | about 2 years ago | (#39698689)

That's the nature of science. Nobody pursues a research project if it doesn't have promising results early on. A lot of times those results won't pan out. But over time a few of them will. Those few add up - and that's why modern medicine is so much more advanced than it was even a hundred years ago.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (2)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#39699925)

that's why modern medicine is so much more advanced than it was even a hundred years ago.

A hundred years ago? Not even fifty. In the 1960s they used ethyl ether as an anesthetic. Highly falmmable (it's still used as automotive starting fluid) and really NASTY effects. They used it on me when I had a tonsillectomy as a kid, then a couple years later when I broke both my arms. The stuff is a terrible nightmare trip to hell and you wake up sick as a dog.

Now they say "ok, you're going to sleep now" and you say "uh, it's not working" and they reply "we're done, you're in the recovery room."

Tuberculosis meant having a lung removed. No longer. A gall bladder operation left a six inch scar, now half an inch. Polio meant a dead or crippled child. Now it's gone, or nearly so.

In the sixties, McCoy's sick bay was futuristic; they had nothing like his monitors. Today his sick bay looks primitive.

In the eighties, HIV was a death sentence. Now they can control it with drugs and keep you alive for the length of a normal lifetime.

In the fifties, any cancer was a death sentence. TB meant you were never going to be able to do hard work again, if you even survived.

There were no organ transplants. Your kidneys failed, you died. Period. No LASIC, no CrystaLens, no soft contact lenses, no antivirals, no naproxin sodium, no viagra, no SSRIs, no CAT scans, no MRIs.

Today's young people have no idea how primitive it was 50 years ago.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695265)

it is too bad that thousands of lab-mice/-rats have had to suffer all kinds of pains in various science-labs over the decades

Well actually they didn't have to. We chose to inflict this pain on them for our own selfish ends. By what right (other than might) do we have to make another animal suffer to sustain our own pathetic existence?

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695409)

By what right (other than might) do we have to make another animal suffer

There are no universal rights, anyway. We simply have the ability to do it. And we decided to do it.

do we have to make another animal suffer to sustain our own pathetic existence?

Unfortunately, yes. We have to eat (either animals or plants). This research is very useful to us.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39699371)

So, by your reasoning, should I find that repeatedly punching you in the face deals with my anger, tough shit for you.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (5, Insightful)

Gordo_1 (256312) | about 2 years ago | (#39695449)

Since you're so self-righteously against scientific research on animals, perhaps you should consider making a stand and refusing to use therapies that were tested on animals.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

aurelianito (684162) | about 2 years ago | (#39695883)

Since you're so self-righteously against scientific research on animals, perhaps you should consider making a stand and refusing to use therapies that were tested on animals.

Please mod parent insightful

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

petsounds (593538) | about 2 years ago | (#39695995)

Well, being vegan I refuse to take flu shots because they're incubated using fertilized chicken eggs. But I'm also pragmatic; if it's a treatment that will save my life, I will take it. That doesn't mean I approve of animal-based research -- I hope we continue to make strides towards moving away from that, it's barbaric -- but I don't live in a utopia.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

uncanny (954868) | about 2 years ago | (#39697071)

it's barbaric

Ah yes, barbarians were pioneers in animal testing for purposes of engineering cures to diseases ravaging mankind.

Conan, tester on animals!

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

petsounds (593538) | about 2 years ago | (#39697185)

From the Oxford American Dictionary:

barbaric:
1 savagely cruel; exceedingly brutal
2 primitive; unsophisticated

So yes, I find torturing and maiming animals, and stealing away their free will and often their lives to advance scientific knowledge both 'savagely cruel' and 'primitive'. I'm sure you were trying to be funny, but I find the subject void of humor.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

kurzweilfreak (829276) | about 2 years ago | (#39697535)

1 savagely cruel; exceedingly brutal 2 primitive; unsophisticated

That sounds suspiciously like the natural world these creatures would live in were we not raising them to perform experiments on them.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (2)

silentcoder (1241496) | about 2 years ago | (#39698491)

>stealing away their free will

Oh come off it. There are serious scientific doubt if free will is even physically possible. The universe is a predictable system of cause and effect, all matter follows fixed paths through time and space right back to the moment of the big bang. There is absolutely no proof that the matter in our brains behave any differently - indeed free will may well be simply an illusion - what it feels like have a brain despite the fact that what you will end up deciding is always predetermined by the laws of physics.

This isn't proven (or perhaps even provable) but the evidence is very much that free will doesn't really exist. Does that mean we should just assume there's no such thing and do away with freedom (no freedom makes sense without free will). No. It means whether or not we do that is not actually something we can decide. Can we actually judge a criminal for his crimes if there is no free will ? Actually if there's no free will - we can't NOT judge him.

That said - there may be such a thing after all, we have no idea. If nothing else the sheer complexity of an advanced brain makes the results so unpredictable that from the outside the results of it existing or not are completely indistinguishable. If free will exists at all - it exists because our brains are so damn complex that despite being predetermined their outcomes are completely unpredictable.

So to suggest that the far simpler brain of a rat has free will still makes absolutely no sense. It's simply not possible. Besides which - many of those tests you so hate actually proved that they don't. Human brains are complex - they may have something like free will as an emergent phenomenon but rat brains are (by comparison) much, much simpler - and there's just not enough of them to produce anything that even remotely resembles free will. We've proven that.

I don't think the emergent property we call free will only applies to humans, some other intelligent creatures probably have variations on it (domestic docs and cats - because of the stimulation of human interaction probably develop it, their wild counterparts probably do not), elephants, dolphins and octopi probably have something close... but rats and mice ?

And there, ladies and gentlemen, is the problem with vegans: they never bother to learn any science and apply as much cognitive dissonance as they can to exclude everything that doesn't make them feel good.
Humans are not herbivores, we are omnivores and like every other primate meat is a natural and needed part of our diet. Chimps love baby monkeys... for dinner (nice and tender meat). Baboons regularly hunt antelope (I've watched them do it).

Primates are omnivores. That's science, and a vegetarian or vegan diet can NEVER be completely healthy (though if well planned it can come close - see I actually do care about science so I don't discount the real reality even if it doesn't suit my position).

Basically dude... in the end every species is in it for themselves, that's exactly how nature intended it, that's how species progress. If it's a choice between a family member dying of HIV or a million dead mice... I choose my family member, and there is nothing wrong with, it's exactly how nature wants us to act (and the fact that we as a whole constantly do is another argument against the traditional view of free will)

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

mcgrew (92797) | about 2 years ago | (#39700219)

If nothing else the sheer complexity of an advanced brain makes the results so unpredictable that from the outside the results of it existing or not are completely indistinguishable. If free will exists at all - it exists because our brains are so damn complex that despite being predetermined their outcomes are completely unpredictable.

Is there actually such a thing a chaos, or is chaos simply something that's too complex for modern math to formulate? I'm personally skeptical that free will actually exists. As you say, there is no scientific proof that I know of, nor is the term "free will" anywhere in the Christian bible that I've seen. Not sure what the Bhudddist or Hindi texts say.

Vegans should not take any medicine, period, or they're hypocrites. Me? I love steak. My PETA is "people eating tasty animals". I suspect that veganism is a form of mental illness, since (as you say), humans are omnivores.

And you're right about vegans' denial of fact -- they keep trying to convince people that meat is unhealthy, when the exact opposite is true.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39707539)

Don't know about Bhuddist/Hindi/Atheism, but free will is throughout the Christian Bible. Adam & Eve: If no free will, no "apple". Elijah(?) told one of the Israeli kings to womp down with a stick; He did so 3 times & got 3 victories; If he had chosen to do it more, he would have beaten Syria completely--his choice. The whole story of Jesus/salvation is "You ask for it, you got it"--you have to freely chose salvation.

You may not believe Christianity, but free will is written all the way through the Bible.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39697157)

Well, being vegan I refuse to take flu shots because they're incubated using fertilized chicken eggs. But I'm also pragmatic...

I don't take flu shots because I think they are just a government subsidized handout to pharmaceutical companies. Seriously, I have to wonder if they have any effect on anything but the particular strain(s) they were created from.
It's the flu. If you're a reasonably healthy adult and have the brains to take care of yourself you'll survive. And gain immunity! Sleep, get lots of fluids (broth, fruit juice), sleep, eat whenever you can keep it down (pretzels and saltines are good for queazy stomachs), sleep, you'll recover.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

harley78 (746436) | about 2 years ago | (#39698381)

I'm not vegan; but also don't take flu vaccines. Mainly because I'm not young, old, or inferm. At some point, the flu vaccine might save your life. At what point do you change your mind?

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

jimbolauski (882977) | about 2 years ago | (#39699105)

Just about every drug has been tested on animals, Tylenol, Aspirin, ... I am not familiar with the FDA approval process for a drug but am fairly sure that animal testing is the only way to gain approval. There might be a way to gain approval to start human testing without animal testing first but I seriously doubt it. If you take any FDA approved drugs then you are using medicine that was tested on animals.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (2, Insightful)

Cstryon (793006) | about 2 years ago | (#39695701)

The right to survive. We are fitter than them. My health, and my species health means more to me than some lower creatures life. Same reason for why I eat.

I imagine it would suck for us when some higher alien species starts doing the same thing to us. ( not likely as biologically we'd probably be very different. Maybe using us for their own benefit in some other ways),. But they would have, naturally, every right too. Good thing we are capable of complicated thought, and perhaps could up-rise.

The only thing that makes me worth living in nature is my ability to keep stronger creatures from using me for their good.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

mug funky (910186) | about 2 years ago | (#39698309)

because the mice lack the Will to Power.

if the mice cannot defeat us, we are free to use them for our means until they can.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695339)

Not going to happen... it is much more lucrative to sell treatment. Nobody wants to commercialize a cure.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695447)

Maybe that is true in corrupt governments, which give priority to businesses revenue, but in the UE it's the state which pays citizens treatments, so they will be happy to investigate a definitive cure.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (4, Insightful)

Asic Eng (193332) | about 2 years ago | (#39695567)

We have to kill millions of rodents to protect ourselves from disease and to secure our food supplies. Even if you decide to live as a vegetarian mice and rats need to be killed e.g. for grain supplies. It's really absurd to put the focus on the inconsequential number of lab mice.

We should rather make sure that the scientists who use these lab mice to cure and treat horrible diseases get the respect and public backing they deserve.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

jovius (974690) | about 2 years ago | (#39697889)

I hope this treatment becomes soon available to the millions of children and would-be mothers infected with HIV. HIV and other STDs can't really be eradicated however. At most we'll probably end up having better protection against them and their prevalence can be lowered below epidemic levels. We still have to practice safe sex and eradicate ignorance.

Re:If this leads to a cure for Human HIV... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 2 years ago | (#39698963)

Maybe some lab-rat/lab-mice statues should be errected in a few town squares somewhere, so that we become conscious of where our medical cures come from...)

I was rolling my eyes until I got to this point and it suddenly became genius. Here is my proposal: A squishy foam "stress reliever" consisting of a noble mouse on a tiny plinth. You could sell them to Archie McPhee.

That's great but (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695069)

until the Americans have decided their war against Africa and Homosexuals has claimed enough victims I wouldn't expect a cure.

Re:That's great but (-1, Troll)

Hentes (2461350) | about 2 years ago | (#39695445)

Actually, the Africans are responsible for AIDS because they ate HIV-infected monkeys until the virus has mutated to be able to infect humans.

Re:That's great but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695499)

Can you prove this? I'd like to know where you got this data, so that I can educate myself if it's a credible source...unless you know for a fact!

Re:That's great but (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695601)

There's a great episode of Radiolab ("Patient Zero") that discusses the likely way that HIV came to be. I highly recommend it.

Re:That's great but (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39696867)

I dont know why this was maked as troll as this a seriously discussed possibility

http://www.avert.org/origin-aids-hiv.htm

Re:That's great but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39700105)

Or more likely Salks Polio vaccine made from known contaminated monkeys in Africa (hey, because its cheaper), given to hundreds of thousands of natives, caused it.

Oooh, mint! (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39695261)

This is going to be really popular with the fundamentalists. Using stem cells to oppose God's Will?

Maybe not (4, Interesting)

NotSoHeavyD3 (1400425) | about 2 years ago | (#39695843)

I mean the article isn't very clear but I wouldn't think you'd need embryonic stem cells for this. I'd think a hematopoietic stem cell should work since they're the ones that turn into Killer-T cells. Anyway that's what they're transplanting when they give you a bone marrow transplant. Admittedly bone marrow transplant is basically one of the most dangerous medical procedures they can do to you so hopefully this means they'll be able to do a safer version of this transplant. Hey, any medical researchers here to let us know which kind of stem cell they're talking about?

Re:Maybe not (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39696267)

If you dig to the actual abstract and then google the source of HSc's, you'll see they are adult bone marrow cells. Why get a transfusion when they can doctor up your own cells to do this? No babies needed for the treatment, why bother with it if you already have source material from the host to make the new cells and avoid rejection by the body? This is a win-win for all concerned.

Re:Maybe not (1)

LordLucless (582312) | about 2 years ago | (#39696367)

Shush, you're applying logic to slashdot's knee-jerk reaction. Don't you know it's a scientific fact that religion is a pox on society and it's every slashdotter's duty to attack it any time an article on stem cells, birth control or evolution is submitted, regardless of applicability?

Re:Maybe not (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39698997)

No, but it is scientific fact that religion has killed more humans than all other causes put together. If killing in those kind of numbers isn't considered a "pox on society" what would you consider one? When every human is dead due to religion?

Re:Maybe not (1)

LordLucless (582312) | about 2 years ago | (#39699147)

No, it is not scientific (not experimental) and it's not fact. Give me any one situation in which you say "religion" killed people, and I can point you to three other contributing factors. Crusades? Unlanded nobles wanting real estate. Northern Ireland? English conquest and occupation. Middle East? Political interventionism - British in creating Israel, and American pretty much ever since. Assigning blame to one factor over another is an exercise in speculation, not fact.

Re:Oooh, mint! (0, Troll)

CapOblivious2010 (1731402) | about 2 years ago | (#39695857)

This is going to be really popular with the fundamentalists. Using stem cells to oppose God's Will?

Yeah, that was my first thought: They're going to kill babies to help gays? This should be fun to watch!

Ok let's not kill off the human race here (1)

sudden.zero (981475) | about 2 years ago | (#39696509)

Have these UCLA researchers not read I Am Legend?

Re:Ok let's not kill off the human race here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39697469)

Heh. You mean "seen" the book does very little to allude to the origins of the disease.

Re:Ok let's not kill off the human race here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39697493)

Why would they need to read a movie?
What? There's a book? Really?

DRACOs simpler/easier? (some old news was better) (2)

hsalstond (2614997) | about 2 years ago | (#39699041)

There's definitely incredible potential with the ability to engineer natural killer cells, no doubt about it. But I see a simpler and sooner available solution to HIV and other viral disease with DRACOs (altho it maybe only treatable with these in an early stage or as a 'temporary universal vaccine'). DRACOs (Double-stranded RNA Activated Caspase Oligomerizers) are the class of combo ds-DNA detection protein and a programmed cell-death signal protein. The combination makes the cell's automatic suicide process extremely sensitive to viral presence (preventing the cell from hosting viral reproduction). Only invented last year, these are still awaiting human testing, but they do appear to be a miraculously perfect cure/temporary vaccine for apparently ALL viral disease. These are pretty much the most promising looking antiviral drugs ever. http://web.mit.edu/newsoffice/2011/antiviral-0810.html [mit.edu]

Easy to figure out... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#39699403)

1) Homosexuality is a sin.
2) All sexual immorality is a sin.
3) We should still devote money, time and resources to curing AIDS.
4) Hating people is also a sin. So pay attention to #3.

Re:Easy to figure out... (1)

doston (2372830) | about 2 years ago | (#39701501)

1) Homosexuality is a sin. 2) All sexual immorality is a sin. 3) We should still devote money, time and resources to curing AIDS. 4) Hating people is also a sin. So pay attention to #3.

5) Religious nuts are still nuts, even if you find the odd Christian still barely sane enough to admit a homosexual is entitled to treatment. 6) Religious nuts think they're morally superior for rising to the level of base morality that would allow 'money, time and resources' to be spent on somebody who engaged in "sexual immorality" 7) Religious nuts can't see the irony in that even a run-of-the-mill athiest wouldn't even have to think through 1-2 & 4 before automatically thinking 3.

An interesting read (1)

CptA (2619235) | about 2 years ago | (#39706325)

All cynicism aside, I think that this is an interesting article and personally approve of the use of stem cells of any kind if (and only if) it will work towards the improvement in the quality of life to people now and in the future. Call it narrow minded if it helps you to sleep at night, after all, we're all entitled to an opinion. I think that the effect this sort of breakthrough would have on the whole world (lets take a moment to consider countries where HIV and AIDS are a daily concern) far outweighs the moral impliactions that seem to be thrust the subject of stem cell research in the first place. Yes it's a controvesial subject but as with any topic of this nature you will have your far lefts, your far rights, and everybody in between. What a lot of people don't see is the bigger picture. Yes we're working with things we don't yet fully comprehend but that's the whole purpose of science, to take the unknown and test it to gain a better understanding to improve the lives of others. I applaud the research done here and hope that we see similar breakthroughs for things like Cancer and other terminal illnesses in the near future.

I wish someone would write a book about (1)

ToddInSF (765534) | about 2 years ago | (#39708113)

all the media articles over the decades related to amazing new discoveries relevant to HIV/AIDS.

99.999% of it would show that none of it has ever panned out, and it's all mostly bullshit.
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