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New Article in Mens' Health on Keith Jerome's Herpes Cure Research

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Cas9
29 minutes ago, Malcolm said:

Does anyone know what kind of endonuclease he achieved 90% elimination? I've always said, ZFNs are the go with HSV. Small, light, and hard-coded. Cas-9 is fantastic for prototyping and research but clunky for end-user therapy.

90% elimination???

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Lost-hope
43 minutes ago, Malcolm said:

Does anyone know what kind of endonuclease he achieved 90% elimination? I've always said, ZFNs are the go with HSV. Small, light, and hard-coded. Cas-9 is fantastic for prototyping and research but clunky for end-user therapy.

Beyond the “Men’s Health” article I don’t think those actually numbers or findings have been published in any medical sources yet. 

But im sure they would not have ran the article without it being accurate .

I think everyone is awaiting an official announcement from Keith Jerome 

Edited by Lost-hope

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Cas9
27 minutes ago, Lost-hope said:

Beyond the “Men’s Health” article I don’t think those actually numbers or findings have been published in any medical sources yet. 

But im sure they would not have ran the article without it being accurate .

I think everyone is awaiting an official announcement from Keith Jerome 

Just looked at the article so I now see the 90% figure. The article also states:

"As Awasthi points out, all research in the field to date has been done in animal cells in a lab, which are not always a great proxy for the living human body at large. Jerome hopes to move on to human trials and optimization in the not-too-distant-future...."

Nevertheless, the 90% achievement is still a positive thing. Let's hope it translates to the human body. And of course he also states there's more room for optimization.

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information seeker

But they said they were ready to move into to animal trails 2014. Also I am starting to worry the good doctor has shifted his research to HIV. 

Edited by information seeker

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Cas9
38 minutes ago, information seeker said:

But they said they were ready to move into to animal trails 2014.

Where  does it say that?

 

39 minutes ago, information seeker said:

Also I am starting to worry the good doctor has shifted his research to HIV. 

What evidence is there that the doctor has shifted to HIV research?

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information seeker

     

A Fred Hutch and University of Washington team of virologists and bioengineers led by Dr. Keith Jeromehas received a $200,000 grant — the first phase of up to $1.5 million in milestone-driven funding over four years — to develop nanocarrier technology to deliver therapies to reservoirs of dormant, HIV-infected cells.

The grant is from the New York-based amfAR, or Foundation for AIDS Research, as part of its “Countdown to a Cure for AIDS” initiative, which aims to achieve the scientific underpinnings of a cure by 2020. The hard-to-reach reservoirs are a key barrier to curing HIV.

Sound like it

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Tired of waiting

As I predicted in another thread, HIV funding will lead researchers to that effort. Those of us with HSV,., well get F'cked again. Enjoy standing by for another 10 years until they return to HSV.

yes, I know I sound pessimistic, but I have been on the sidelines (27 years) waiting for HSV research to get any notice and or parity with HIV!

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Voyager2

I wouldn't get alarmed just yet. Fred Hutch is a big lab with experienced scientists that can handle more than one virus at a time, just as Excision Bio and Editas are doing. Also, there is some overlap, as off target safety issues in gene editing is a common obstacle. The FDA just loosened the guidelines to accelerate testing, and what works for HIV might point the way for HSV. Dr. Jerome knows how many people are infected with each. Let's see what develops in 2019..   

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Cas9
8 hours ago, information seeker said:

     

A Fred Hutch and University of Washington team of virologists and bioengineers led by Dr. Keith Jeromehas received a $200,000 grant — the first phase of up to $1.5 million in milestone-driven funding over four years — to develop nanocarrier technology to deliver therapies to reservoirs of dormant, HIV-infected cells.

The grant is from the New York-based amfAR, or Foundation for AIDS Research, as part of its “Countdown to a Cure for AIDS” initiative, which aims to achieve the scientific underpinnings of a cure by 2020. The hard-to-reach reservoirs are a key barrier to curing HIV.

Sound like it

He's working on HIV and HSV. Pretty much everyone knows that.

And he wasn't doing animal studies on hsv in 2014.

Neither of your concerns is valid

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dont quit!17
14 hours ago, Lost-hope said:

Beyond the “Men’s Health” article I don’t think those actually numbers or findings have been published in any medical sources yet. 

But im sure they would not have ran the article without it being accurate .

I think everyone is awaiting an official announcement from Keith Jerome 

Someone should ask them if the 90% figure is accurate? Journalist tend to fudge up numbers to make their articles more intriguing. It seems to me that Dr. Jerome, Dr. Wald and their establishment are pretty careful with putting up false information out so it probably is real. 

With that being said, I think I have read this article about 5 times. The first time I read the article, it gave me for the first time a real sense of hope about not having to live with this into my old age. 

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Lost-hope

@dont quit!17 I think I read about 10x and I agree with you, I don’t think they would have put that out if it wasn’t true.

we just have to wait and see what exactly are they referring to when they say 90% but either way that number is very promising 

and I personally think that when the FHC does announce it, it will be a major milestone 

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MikeHerp
On 2/20/2019 at 9:57 AM, Malcolm said:

Does anyone know what kind of endonuclease he achieved 90% elimination? I've always said, ZFNs are the go with HSV. Small, light, and hard-coded. Cas-9 is fantastic for prototyping and research but clunky for end-user therapy.

He's been using meganucleases.  

They've also tried CRISPR Cas9 recently, but found it less effective against latent virus--as you suggested.  

Pls don't forget about the fund raiser.  Every $ is welcome and important.  

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Tired of waiting

Has there been any further comments made by Keith Jerome regarding this topic? I ask because, while the Mens Health story just came out, its unclear when they interviewed Keith?  I Believe the lead time from interview to publishing a story could be many months maybe up to six, and therefor dated.  so there may be some new information available?

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MikeHerp
19 hours ago, dont quit!17 said:

Someone should ask them if the 90% figure is accurate? Journalist tend to fudge up numbers to make their articles more intriguing. It seems to me that Dr. Jerome, Dr. Wald and their establishment are pretty careful with putting up false information out so it probably is real. 

With that being said, I think I have read this article about 5 times. The first time I read the article, it gave me for the first time a real sense of hope about not having to live with this into my old age. 

I honestly think you are correct to harbor hope.  

I do think there was some sloppy journalism in this piece, but I do think it suggests that they are making progress in this important research.  

The reason why it is sloppy is that, it refers to a 2-4% editing rate using CRISPR in mice achieved by CRISPR, linking to an article written in the Smithsonian magazine.  However, that article is absolutely clear that this 2-4% was achieved not using CRISPR but meganucleases (and we also know this from Jerome's scientific paper).  So that mistake raises a yellow flag about the rest of the numbers, including the 90% number, in the magazine.

That said,  the gist of this article, that Jerome is making important progress, and that human trials may be a possibility in the not too distant future, are the essence of it, and I think those stipulations are correct:

Here's what we do know:

  • In 2016, they announced editing of 2-4% latent HSV in mice (https://www.fredhutch.org/en/news/center-news/2016/09/can-gene-editing-cure-herpes.html)  and the link cited therein.  This was enough to measurably delay replication, but the effect was not statistically significant.
  • It appears that, in 2018, they were able to increase the editing efficiency to nearly 20-30% in mice (page 7 of this: http://www.ucdenver.edu/academics/colleges/medicalschool/departments/neurology/CALS/Documents/2018 CALS abstracts.pdf).  This was stated in a summary of a alphavirus latency symposium, not in a research paper, so the details are a bit fuzzy.  But it does appear to mean 20-30%, i.e., a partial cure in mice.  If that's correct--it it does sound like it--then it means that's a huge increase in editing efficiency from 2016.
  • We also know from the grants that their team has been awarded, that they are now fine tuning their approach, with the aim of proceeding towards a large scale animal trial, which would be a necessary precursor to human trials.  It really does sound from this that they are aiming for human trials.  "This project is expected to demonstrate the feasibility of our therapeutic approach directed towards the elimination of HSV pathogenesis in vivo, and to provide critical information for the development of a larger scale animal study necessary to bring this new therapeutic approach to the clinic." (http://grantome.com/grant/NIH/R01-AI132599-01A1)

So coming back to the Mens' Health article, it is possible that they've achieved 90% editing efficiency?  I think it's possible, but it's not clear.  The article seems to suggest that they were only doing this in mice cells in the lab, which sounds like in-vitro.  However, we know from his research paper, that the experiments they conducted in 2016 which edited 2-4% of latent HSV in mice, were conducted in mice in vivo (it seems the Mens Health article doesn't make this very clear either)

It also appears they they have been recently conducting some theoretical research into the number of gene editing doses/therapies, that it would take, in order to effect a cure (https://www.fredhutch.org/en/news/spotlight/2018/09/vidd_jerome_bmc.html).  This study was done with HIV in mind, but there's a sentence at the end of it noting that they intend to do a similar study for HSV.  What that tells me is that, they envision this as a series of shots of that, combined would deactivate latent virus (i.e., giving 2 or more doses, would increase the editing and deactivation rate).  I'm just speculating here, but in the 2016 study, as far as I'm aware, they only gave the mice one injection.  If editing efficiency of a dose can be increased, and an animal can tolerate multiple doses, it seems possible that the % of deactivated virus could increase over several doses, such that, in the end of the series, a large portion--maybe even 90% of the latent virus--is deactivated.  In that sense, I think it's plausible that they may have achieved a 90% editing rate (but it's not clear from the Mens' Health article)

Anyway, I don't think we should necessarily focus on the 90%.  It's not entirely clear what it means in the article.  But it is clear that Jerome has been making significant progress.  He does sound excited.  And look, in the article, he expressly says people should be excited about this. I honestly think he means that.  He doesn't seem like the kind of guy who tries to hype stuff up that he doesn't think has much chance to succeed.  When he says he thinks there will be a cure in his lifetime, I don't think that he means a cure might be announced on his death bed, when he's 89 years old.  Further, I'm also cognizant that he mentions in the 2016 piece that, while a 100% cure is the goal, he notes that it's possible there could be "intermittent" or partial success along the way.  

Putting all this together, I think being hopeful about this that this will start to go somewhere in the not too distant future, is fairly realistic and the right understanding.  

 

Edited by MikeHerp

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MikeHerp
19 hours ago, Lost-hope said:

@dont quit!17 I think I read about 10x and I agree with you, I don’t think they would have put that out if it wasn’t true.

we just have to wait and see what exactly are they referring to when they say 90% but either way that number is very promising 

and I personally think that when the FHC does announce it, it will be a major milestone 

Basically agree. I think we have to be patient and just give it time.  I think if we try to ask them or pin them down, we'll just get generalities.  The key point is that, they are making progress and the progress is exciting.  That much is pretty clear.

Let's also keep in mind that, these scientists don't have an obligation to announce the result of every experiment.  Like if the they get 4% efficiency in one experiment, and then they get 8% in the next, they aren't obligated to publish a research paper detailing every time they increase editing efficiency by 4%.  I suspect, the next time a paper is published would be when they can prove some other qualitative breakthrough, rather than just an increase in editing efficiency in mice.  We'll see.

In my communications with Fred Hutch's philanthropy team as part of setting up the fund raiser, I specifically asked them to try to provide some updates every once in a while and they have tentatively agreed.  So we'll know sooner or later what it going on.  

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Voyager2

Here's the reference to 90%:

"Even though CRISPR has stoked interest in the field, Jerome notes that in the past few years other gene editing tools have seen massive spikes in efficiency when it comes to herpes cures.

His therapy, he adds, has gone from five percent to over 90 percent effective at eliminating herpes in mice cells in the lab over the last two and a half years."

 

Does "mice cells in the lab" mean (a) in a petri dish or (b) in a live mouse?  Either way, it's wonderful news. I personally think they have moved past the tipping point on the way to developing a therapeutic treatment.

    

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MikeHerp
1 hour ago, Voyager2 said:

Here's the reference to 90%:

"Even though CRISPR has stoked interest in the field, Jerome notes that in the past few years other gene editing tools have seen massive spikes in efficiency when it comes to herpes cures.

His therapy, he adds, has gone from five percent to over 90 percent effective at eliminating herpes in mice cells in the lab over the last two and a half years."

 

Does "mice cells in the lab" mean (a) in a petri dish or (b) in a live mouse?  Either way, it's wonderful news. I personally think they have moved past the tipping point on the way to developing a therapeutic treatment.

    

It's not clear.  The experiments in which they inactivated 2-4% latent HSV in mice, was definitely in living mice. The research paper is very clear about that.  It appears that in May 2018, they also reported nearly 20-30% inactivation of latent HSV in living mice.

It's not clear what the 90% is referring to, whether in living mice or some artificial latency model using mice sells in vitro.  I really hope that it was in living mice.  That would make sense, since the earlier experiments were in living mice.  But in any case, as you mentioned, this research is progressing very well.

Let's continue to try to raise money for it.  

Edited by MikeHerp

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realscience77
On 2/14/2019 at 3:34 PM, Miss Horne said:

The way I feel today, Dr Jerome could test it on me now without doing any  further research :D

Samsie :)

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oneday

Just wish we had SOMETHING now. How long do we have to wait?

I looked after a woman last night who was 71 and taking valtrex daily. Sorry, but that would be awful being that age and still no permanent resolution.

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Tired of waiting

What's on the dark web for experimental treatments from non FDA regulated countries.

I have been waiting over 27 years for any kind of credible solution.  A lot of people on this forum have only recently been diagnosed with HSV,  and they  think that a cure is a year or two away. In reality based the standard protocol of endless animal testing we are really looking at lest another 10 to 15 years for a solution. for me that is at least 71 or end of life. 

There really needs to be a paradigm change in some of this testing. whether it's vaccine or CRISPR, if a solution works in-vitro, then with enough informed consent, further testing should go to human testing ASAP.  At this point in time there are so many desperate people (me included) who will take a risk on an experimental cure over a life sentence of this shit disease.  

Had Halford from Rational  vaccine lived another year or two we might have better information as to the results of his work. As it now we have a half finished study and the FDA thumping it chest trying to assert power over the experiment conducted out of its jurisdiction, which is further driving more delays and ethics reviews for other candidate vaccines. 

I'm really glad to see that their are people that can sit back and be proud of their ethics while people continue to suffer and new people get infected every day. Bravo well done!

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Voyager2

@oneday  Couldn't agree more. I would only guess that Pritlivir might be the next medication out of the pipeline. After that there are 3 vaccines and a number of gene editing programs (of which Jerome's lab is one). We don't have too much information about any of them at the moment. Like someone else said, they have no obligation to keep us posted.

Edited by Voyager2

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oneday

It's ridiculous how decades can pass, candidates come and leave the research scene and we are no better off.

The only thing I see as a benefit to us now than before is being more vocal publicly by coming out from suffering in silence.

Historically, science scholars would consider it a non-issue or nuisance at worst. It's much more than that and impacts multifacets of a person. A cure is needed now.

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information seeker

Yup

1 hour ago, oneday said:

It's ridiculous how decades can pass, candidates come and leave the research scene and we are no better off.

The only thing I see as a benefit to us now than before is being more vocal publicly by coming out from suffering in silence.

Historically, science scholars would consider it a non-issue or nuisance at worst. It's much more than that and impacts multifacets of a person. A cure is needed now

Yup, finally, you understand. That why I use fear and scare tactics

 

Also herpes is spreading quicker now. It cause many issues like blindness, death, Alzheimers, can cause cancer, and much more. But they don't talk about that. It all about HIV. Which is not that big of an issue, the impact of herpes will cause devastation across the first world. Disease cause by herpes are on the rise.

Edited by information seeker

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WilsoInAus
31 minutes ago, information seeker said:

Yup

Yup, finally, you understand. That why I use fear and scare tactics

 

Also herpes is spreading quicker now. It cause many issues like blindness, death, Alzheimers, can cause cancer, and much more. But they don't talk about that. It all about HIV. Which is not that big of an issue, the impact of herpes will cause devastation across the first world. Disease cause by herpes are on the rise.

This has the substance of a tissue!

How does HSV cause cancer? I think you are referring to HPV.

It does not cause Alzheimer’s that thinking has long gone.

Herpes is on the decline, we have never seen a lower proportion of the worlds population infected.

Death? More people will die from falling coconuts this year than herpes. Why aren’t you addressing this issue??

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information seeker
8 minutes ago, WilsoInAus said:

This has the substance of a tissue!

How does HSV cause cancer? I think you are referring to HPV.

It does not cause that thinking has long gone.

Herpes is on the decline, we have never seen a lower proportion of the worlds population infected.

Death? More people will die from falling coconuts this year than herpes. Why aren’t you addressing this issue??

You are sadly mistaken herpes is not on the decline. Most doctors don't test for herpes. Also most people don't know they have herpes because of mild or no symptoms at all. So how can you say it on the decline. If I was you I would read up on current events when it comes to herpes.

 

There is quite a bit of evidence herpes cause adverse effects but are seen in the long run. When herpes head to the brain. The brain protect it self by generating a protein to protect it self, but in turn that cause Alzheimer. Next herpes disable certain functions in the cell that can cause cancer. For deaths why not look at 1 in 1000 babies who catch herpes and can die or have brain damage.

 

 

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