Your Health: Oct. 7, 2002

AIDS MYSTERY One of the great mysteries about AIDS is why some people (about 1% or 2%) who get infected with the virus never develop the disease. For more than 15 years, scientists have searched for the chemical factors that protect these so-called long-term nonprogressors, and now a team of researchers including Dr. David Ho, director of the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center, think they have found them. Using new protein-chip technology, they have identified three proteins--alpha-defensins 1, 2 and 3--that are present in nonprogressors but not in AIDS patients. The defensins, which are well known as natural bacteria fighters, could...

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