Man, 66, becomes fourth person in history seemingly cured of HIV - after leukaemia treatment

28 July 2022, 09:10 | Updated: 28 July 2022, 09:13

The man is the fourth known person to no longer be living with the virus
The man is the fourth known person to no longer be living with the virus. Picture: Alamy

By Asher McShane

A 66-year-old man has become the oldest person to be cured of HIV, as a by-product of treatment for leukaemia.

The man not been identified, but he was treated in California and is the fourth known person to no longer be living with the virus.

The man, who had HIV since 1988, received a stem cell transplant from someone who is resistant to the virus.Doctors believe his is only the fourth recorded case of someone being cured of HIV.

He has now stopped taking HIV medication, and said he was “beyond grateful” the virus was no longer in his system.

The man has been dubbed the ‘City of Hope’ patient after being treated in Duarte, California.

Read more: British Gas owner's profits increase five-fold to £1.3b as energy bills soar

Read more: Helicopter victim Jack Fenton was not trying to take selfie, Greek investigators admit

In a statement, the man said: "When I was diagnosed with HIV in 1988, like many others, I thought it was a death sentence.

"I never thought I would live to see the day that I no longer have HIV."

He was given a bone marrow transplant from a donor resistant to HIV, after he developed leukaemia at the age of 63.

He has been in remission for 17 months.

Dr Jana Dickter, an infectious diseases doctor at City of Hope, said: “We were thrilled to let him know that his HIV is in remission and he no longer needs to take antiretroviral therapy that he had been on for over 30 years.”

The case was reported at the Aids 2022 conference in Montreal, Canada.

Commenting on the findings, Prof Sharon Lewin, president-elect of the International Aids Society, said: "A cure remains the Holy Grail of HIV research."

She said there had been a "handful of individual cure cases before" and they provided "continued hope for people living with HIV.”