Mississippi Baby Born With HIV 'Functionally Cured,' Doctors Say

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Brown's story -- arguably one of the most followed in the realm of HIV research -- began in 1995 when he was diagnosed with HIV while attending school in Berlin. For the next 11 years, doctors treated him with anti-retroviral therapy, to which he responded positively.

His oncologist, Dr. Gero Hutter of the Charite Hospital in Berlin, opted to give Brown a stem-cell transplant to treat his leukemia. But rather than choosing a matched donor, he used the stem cells of a donor he found who had what is known as a CCR5 mutation, a mutation that makes cells immune to HIV.

After the transplant, Brown was able to stop HIV treatment without experiencing a return of his HIV disease.

The Mississippi case will likely spark new directions of research for adults, too.

"This could prevent a lifetime of treatment," Johnston said. "We want people to understand just how game-changing this may be."

Fauci of the National Institutes of Health says the results could have a global impact if they can be replicated.

"About a thousand babies a day are born HIV infected throughout the world," he said.

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