Gene therapy to cure HIV infection Volume 27, issue 5, Septembre-Octobre 2023


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1 Institut Lady Davis de recherches médicales, Montréal, Québec, H3T 1E2, Canada
2 Département de Microbiologie-Immunologie, Université McGill, Montréal, Québec, H3A 0G4, Canada
3 Département de Médecine, division de Médecine expérimentale, Université McGill, Montréal, Québec, H3A 0G4, Canada
* Correspondance : R. Scarborough

To date, the only intervention that has cured HIV infection has been bone marrow transplants from HIV-resistant donors to HIV-infected recipients. This approach has been used to both cure hematological malignancies and HIV infection, but it cannot be widely adopted due to the high risk of mortality associated with cell transplants between individuals. To overcome this limitation, several approaches have been developed to generate HIV resistance using gene therapy in an infected individual’s own cells. With the growing arsenal of effective methods to generate HIV-resistant cells, a safe and effective combination gene therapy approach to cure HIV infection is fast approaching. Here, we review several gene therapy-based methods to generate HIV-resistant cells including the expression of antiviral genes, genome editing, and transcriptional gene silencing. Their varied mechanisms, advantages, and disadvantages are discussed, and perspectives are provided for how they may be combined to design an effective gene therapy for HIV.