People with AIDS have abnormally high levels of circulating immune complexes -- agglomerations of antibodies and antigens. The complexes are usually removed by red blood cells that bind to them and take them to the liver for processing, says George F. McKinley of St. Luke's. When AIDS patients are transfused with packed red cells, the number of complexes, which probably include AIDS viruses, goes down in five days.
He and his colleagues tried more frequent transfusions to reduce the complexes in 21 patients; the mean survival after diagnosis was 370 days, compared with 249 days for control patients who received a conventional number of transfusions. Eventually the transfusions stop reducing the number of complexes. "It's not a cure," says McKinley, "but it is a delay."
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Date:||Oct 26, 1985|
|Previous Article:||Untangling a knotty problem; mathematicians find a new, simple way to distinguish different types of knots.|
|Next Article:||Chemistry research: invest for rewards.|