>> These mice are offering hope of a functional cure for HIV. They're at a lab in Hong Kong, where researchers hope their tests will lead to a new antibody, acting as both a prevention and a treatment for the virus, which could fight a growing epidemic in China.>> If our antibody really shows a similar efficacy, what we found in the mice in humans, in this case, then we will hope actually antibody can help not only control the viruses in the body, and actually can help to eliminate already infected cells.
So this is we call it the functional cure.>> China faces an HIV problem among high risk groups, such as sex workers. More than 800,000 people are infected with the virus that causes AIDS, and makes the body far more susceptible to deadly infections and disease. In what researchers say is a first, this antibody would be used to treat all varieties of HIV.
And patients would only need to have the injections every few months, compared to the daily medication that's currently on offer.>> While the university hopes it will be rolled out within the next five years, an AIDS charity in the city states it's less optimistic.>> The CEO of AIDS Concern telling Reuters, governments worldwide have been slow to implement potentially life-saving programs.
And a breakthrough in a lab isn't necessarily a breakthrough for patients.