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Timothy Ray Brown – the first person to be cured of HIV – has succumbed to cancer at 54, the International Aids Society (IAS) announced Wednesday.

The US born Mr Brown, was diagnosed with HIV while he lived in Berlin in 1995. In 2007 he developed a type of blood cancer called acute myeloid leukaemia.

Mr Brown was cured of HIV about 12 years ago after undergoing a complex stem cell transplant for the acute leukaemia. The donor who was naturally resistant to HIV.

He stopped using the antiretroviral drugs for the rest of his life.

Mr Brown’s story inspired the world that a cure could eventually be found.

For the past six months, Mr Brown had been living with a recurrence of the leukaemia that had entered his spine and brain.

A statement published on IAS website read: “On behalf of all its members and the Governing Council, the IAS sends its condolences to Timothy’s partner, Tim, and his family and friends,” Adeeba Kamarulzaman, President of the IAS and Professor of Medicine and Infectious Diseases at the University of Malaya, said.

“We owe Timothy and his doctor, Gero Hütter, a great deal of gratitude for opening the door for scientists to explore the concept that a cure for HIV is possible.

”Mr Brown, living with HIV and with acute myeloid leukaemia, received a bone marrow transplant in Berlin, Germany, in 2007. The donor was naturally resistant to HIV infection because of a mutation in the CCR5 gene, a critical protein required by HIV to enter and infect cells.”

 

 

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