AIDS is a horrible disease, both in its effects and in how it operates. Literally, the first thing the AIDS virus does when it gets to the body is grab some cholesterol from the nearest plasmacytoid dendritic cell. This both makes those cells freak out, meaning white blood cells don’t show up, and give it a handy disguise. It’s like AIDS makes itself a skin suit and it actually works.
Unfortunately for AIDS, researchers at Johns Hopkins have figured out how to yank that skin suit right off, leaving AIDS naked in front of the white blood cells ready to curb stomp it.
It’s not a viable vaccine yet: AIDS is pretty hard to inoculate against and no animal or human trials have been conducted. But we just like the image of a vaccine coming along and yanking AIDS’ pants down, the better to kick it in the junk.
[ via Jared’s aides at Geekosystem ]