Are Infants Unique in Their Ability to be “Functionally Cured” of HIV-1?
The recent report of an infant that appears to have achieved a “functional cure” of HIV-1 following receipt of antiretroviral therapy (ART) within 30 hours of birth raises many questions: was the child infected? Was this result due to unique features of this particular infant’s immune system, the immune system of infants or the very early initiation of effective ART? In this manuscript, we discuss the pathogenesis of HIV-1 in infants, highlighting the unique features of infant immune development and how these may inform efforts to cure HIV infection. We will also compare the path to infant “cure” to cures in adults.