Xtra Weekly
2 min

Xtra Weekly: A patient seems to have been cured of HIV

International Women’s Day, lesbian power, and straight men’s masturbation clubs. Here’s your Xtra Weekly, Mar 8.

Timothy Ray Brown, also known as the “Berlin patient,” the first person to be cured of HIV infection, poses for a photograph, Monday, March 4, 2019, in Seattle. Credit: Manuel Valdes/AP

To get Xtra Weekly in your inbox, subscribe here.

WEEKLY DEBRIEF

A second person appears to have been cured of HIV.

Here’s the background 👉For years, scientists and researchers have tried to replicate the results of two procedures performed on Timothy Ray Brown (pictured above), also known as the “Berlin patient,” almost 12 years ago. Brown is the first person in the world known to have been cured of HIV.

Brown was given two bone-marrow transplants, which were intended to treat his cancer. They, in turn, cured his HIV infection.

The latest 👉Earlier this week, scientists announced that a second person, known as the “London patient,” seems to have been cured of HIV. Doctors performed a procedure on the London patient similar to the one performed on Brown.

In an article published by The New York Times, researchers say bone-marrow transplants are unlikely to become a realistic treatment in the near future, but they provide affirmation that HIV can be cured.

In an interview for the piece, virologist Dr Annemarie Wensing said, “This will inspire people that cure is not a dream . . . It’s reachable.”

But as reported by The Advocate, the London patient is in remission, not cured.

In an interview with Reuters, Ravindra Gupta, a professor and HIV biologist who co-led a team treating the London patient, said, “It’s too early to say he’s cured.”

What’s next 👉Is this a realistic cure for the HIV epidemic? Xtra investigates:

WORLD AT A GLANCE

🌎 A recent study states an estimated 4.5 percent of US adults identify as queer and trans. They’re also reported to be economically disadvantaged. 😞

🌎 It’s been six months since the decriminalization of gay sex in India. What has changed?

🌎 Brazil’s president tweets video of a person urinating on another person’s head — and says he’s not comfortable showing it (but does it anyway 👀).

🌎 A Spanish TV host talks about the 21-year-old man he met on Instagram, saying he spent many moments scrutinizing the man’s photos and “recreating” himself in each and every part of the guy’s body. 😏

🌎 Gay-themed play The Inheritance — which focuses on a group of gay men living in modern-day New York — has been nominated for eight Olivier awards in London.

QUEER CONTENT ROUNDUP