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98% of HIV Strains Neutralized by Potent Antibody

Though scientists have worked on a cure or vaccine for HIV for years, developments have been slow. Now, a study released by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases identifies an HIV antibody that shows remarkable promise. They called the HIV antibody N6, and it may be effective against more than a dozen HIV strains.

N6: A Promising HIV Antibody

The various HIV strains are difficult to neutralize because they change and evolve so quickly. HIV strains are designed to do this so that the virus can survive no matter what human ingenuity unleashes against it. Now that the HIV antibody known as N6 has been identified, people may have a better chance of fighting AIDS and the various HIV strains.

The Race to Find an Effective HIV Antibody

The HIV antibody known as N6 was sampled from a person who is infected with HIV. Testing revealed that the antibody was able to neutralize 98 percent of all tested HIV isolates, which included HIV strains that have proven resistant to other potential treatments. With so many HIV strains, and their ability to rapidly evolve to protect themselves, the discovery of this HIV antibody is especially promising.

A Better Treatment for Many HIV Strains

In recent years, researchers have concentrated their efforts on the VRC01 class of antibodies. This HIV antibody would be administered as an intravenous infusion for a vaccination against HIV. It looks like N6 may be able to offer better prevention and may be a more effective treatment for those who are already infected with the virus. Plus, N6 could likely be delivered subcutaneously, which is much easier and less invasive than an intravenous infusion.

Scientists are now performing more in-depth testing on this antibody to explore how it can best be used against various HIV strains.

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