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Information for patients - CROI 2019

IciStem investigates systematically the HIV reservoir in people living with  HIV who either had or may get an allogeneic stem cell transplantation. Each patient registered at the IciStem program participates in a local study led by his/her treating physicians. IciStem advises systematic collection of clinical data and blood, tissue and CSF samples before and after the stem cell transplantation. The IciStem consortium contains a network of highly specialized expert laboratories that can perform the most sensitive tests available to date to measure the HIV reservoir and the quality of the immune system.

Despite all the sensitive tests available to date, the only way to evaluate whether the HIV reservoir has been controlled or cleared is to interrupt antiretroviral therapy (ART).  However, ART interruption must only be performed by patients who have been informed about the risk of therapy interruption and have   signed an informed consent. Furthermore, interruption of ART should be performed in a controlled clinical setting with monitoring over time of a possible viral rebound and the ability for scientifically evaluation.

IciStem is very grateful for all participating patients for assisting in the search for a cure. We understand that the news about patients who discontinued therapy and did not experience a viral a rebound thus far is hope giving. We want to emphasize this has been done after thoroughly testing of the HIV reservoir and with strict monitoring

People living with HIV who have received or will receive an allogeneic transplantation and who are interested to be registered to IciStem, may ask their treating physician to contact the IciStem team.

We can imagine that the HIV positive patients who do not have a hematological disease requiring a stem cell transplantation  visiting our website, would like to participate. Unfortunately, stem cell transplantation is an high risk procedure which comes with a high mortality and patients who do not have a hematological disease requiring a transplantation can therefore not be registered. We do hope we can provide knowledge in the nearby future which can translate the results of IciStem to a broader group of people living with HIV.

The IciStem project is currently supported by the Aidsfonds. IciStem was established with funding from the AmfAR Research Consortium on HIV eradication (ARCHE) Research Grant # 109858-64-RSRL

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