9-Year-Old Girl Gets Treated for Leukemia w/ the HIV Virus

Emma Whitehead

Emma Whitehead

9-year-old Emma Whitehead was in her second relapse of acute lymphoblastic—or lymphocytic—leukemia, commonly called (ALL), when doctors prescribed something unexpected, a disabled form of the HIV virus. Emma was chosen to receive the CT019 therapy, an experimental treatment that involves doctors reprogramming a person’s T-cells (white blood cells that help fight disease in the immune system) to search out and kill cancer cells. The disabled form of HIV helps fight the cancer because the virus is adept at carrying genetic material into T-cells so they’re able to kill off cancer cells. Those genetically altered T-cells go to work attacking cells in the body that play a role in the development of leukemia. To read the rest of the article, click here.

 

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