Felines Bring Us Steps Closer to HIV VaccineAllison Espiritu
Just in time for this year’s World Aids Day on December 1st, researchers have recently gifted the day with great news from studies that may link our feline friends to finding a vaccine to HIV.
Cats like humans can be infected with a similar virus to HIV called, feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV). About 4.4% of cats around the world are infected with FIV.
Taking a look at both types of viruses, researchers from the University of Florida and University of California, San Francisco compared the two and found that proteins from the FIV virus was able to create T cells that would kill the HIV virus in infected humans.
A scientist from the study told Medical News Today, “”Since FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus) and HIV-1 are distant cousins and their sequences are similar, we used the T cells from HIV positive human subjects to see if they can react and induce anti-HIV activity to small regions of FIV protein, which lead to the current story.”
Much more research will be done but as of now let’s hear it for our pretty kitties for taking us one step closer to finding a cure to HIV!