Traditional Chinese medicine trial gets results against HIV/AIDS

09:13, October 19, 2010      

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An ongoing three-year traditional Chinese medical (TCM) trial has achieved breakthroughs in combating HIV/AIDS, Guang'anmen Hospital in Beijing announced on Saturday.

The 565 AIDS patients' condition and immune systems were reportedly remarkably improved, with coughing and tiredness lessened since the trial began in 2008, according to the Beijing Daily.

Animal experiments had demonstrated their treatment could suppress multiplication of the HIV-1 virus in cells, according to the hospital website report on a of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Treatment on October 16 and 17.

Western treatment like Highly Active Antiretroviral Therapy (HAART) can kill almost all the viruses in the blood, said AIDS expert Jin Wei, but the virus could not be totally eliminated. TCM strengthens the immune system.

"It would be ideal if the two methods could be combined together," she said.

HAART is expensive and has strong side effects, said hospital president Zhang Jie, leaving 10-15 percent of patients unable to rebuild their immune system after the treatment. "The Chinese medicine is cheap, almost side effect-free and can boost the improvement of the immune system," he said.

Not everyone was impressed with the alleged advance of the city hospital. "Government experts receive special funding from the nation. If they work hard and invent a cure, they will lose their funding," said an employee of a private TCM company who requested anonymity.

The government sets strict rules on medical trials and private organizations were effectively ruled out of conducting AIDS research, he said. "As the government doesn't support us, we moved to Africa to conduct TCM experiments and we have a close relationship with the health administration of one African nation."

In that experiment, "the antigen turned negative," he said. This indicated they had found a cure, he asserted.

He refused to reveal the name of the nation, as the alleged spectacular result has not been proven effective by international societies.

An Baijie contributed to this story

Source: Global Times(By Xu Tianran)


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