Click here to watch an interview with Bernadina Gonzales, an HIV/AIDS treatment research participant from the Ponce Clinic. The video also includes lead HIV/AIDS investigators from Grady Hospital and Ponce Clinic as well as a CAB member, Chuck Fuller.  

To watch a video about a study about HIV/AIDS CURE research, click How histone deacetylase inhibitors can potentially help in research focusing on a cure for HIV.  Key points from this video on histone deacetylase inhibitors:

  • Dr. Lennox is holding what are representing DNA and proteins (histones); DNA is the black cord and histones are two tennis balls. The small white circle on the black cord is HIV.
  • When HIV is integrated in DNA it is hidden to the immune system and this is because HIV works by cutting DNA and putting a copy of itself in it. This process makes HIV invisible to the body (in other words, it is now a latent virus).
  • Because the immune system is what attacks HIV a challenge to cure HIV is to find all the cells that have this latent virus.
  • A class of medications called Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors are thought to help by relaxing the DNA wrapping (i.e. unwinding the cords), thereby making HIV (the small white circle in the cords) visible to immune system.
  • Although Histone Deacetylase Inhibitors have been used before for other clinical purposes, they are now being tested in studies conducted by the AIDS Clinical Trials Group (ACTG), which the Emory-CDC HIV/AIDS Clinical Trials Unit is part of.