Cats may be key to HIV vaccine

There have been numerous studies showing how dogs can benefit human health, by sniffing out cancer, for example. Now it is time for cats to shine, as researchers say they may hold the key to a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) vaccine.

Researchers from the University of Florida and the University of California, San Francisco, have discovered that blood from patients infected with HIV shows an immune response against a feline AIDS virus protein.

Janet Yamamoto, professor of retroviral immunology at the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Florida and corresponding study author, told Medical News Today:

“Since FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus) and HIV-1 are distant cousins and their sequences are similar, we used the T cells from HIV positive human subjects to see if they can react and induce anti-HIV activity to small regions of FIV protein, which lead to the current story.”

The team’s findings are published in the Journal of Virology.


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