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GEN’s editorial staff interviews life science academic and biotech industry leaders on important research, technology, and trends. These podcasts will keep you informed with all the important details you need.
A cellular protein that helps guide immune cells to the gut has been newly identified as a target of HIV when the virus begins its assault on the body's immune system, according to researchers from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID).
During this week’s podcast, NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci describes the cellular receptor and the immune cells in the gut that were the subjects of the research. While other immune cell receptors have previously been shown to bind to HIV, Dr. Fauci talks about the unique aspects of the newly discovered receptor. He also explains why the identification of this new receptor opens up new avenues of investigation that may help shed further light on the complex mechanisms of the pathogenesis of AIDS infection and he discusses how new drugs might be used based on the NIAID finding to fight HIV infection.
Listen to the podcast and give us your thoughts on the following question:
How significant is the finding that the alpha 4 beta 7 protein is a cellular receptor for HIV and why?
Please share your opinions and observations.
Anthony S. Fauci, M.D. has made many contributions to basic and clinical research on the pathogenesis and treatment of immune-mediated diseases. He has pioneered the field of human immunoregulation by making a number of basic scientific observations that serve as the basis for current understanding of the regulation of the human immune response. In addition, Dr. Fauci is widely recognized for delineating the precise mechanisms whereby immunosuppressive agents modulate the human immune response. Dr. Fauci has made seminal contributions to the understanding of how the AIDS virus destroys the body's defenses leading to its susceptibility to deadly infections. In 1984, Dr. Fauci became Director of NIAID, where he oversees an extensive research portfolio of basic and applied research to prevent, diagnose, and treat infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections, influenza, tuberculosis, malaria and illness from potential agents of bioterrorism. NIAID also supports research on transplantation and immune-related illnesses, including autoimmune disorders, asthma and allergies.