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With all of our technology and know how, why is there no cure for AIDS or cancer yet?
I mean we can now clone people and animals for goodness sakes, but we can't cure a few diseases? Is it a monetary issue you suppose, or something else that is holding up production here?
asked in technology, medical

Messerwisser answers:

Because some viruses, bacteria and illnesses are smarter than we are.
Factors are Time, Knowledge, Priority and Money.

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Hiheels answers:

Or even the common cold!
Mind you, I think that one's because there are so many strains of it.

Bottom line is, Wrestlers, we're not as damned clever as we think we are - some of these boffins/scientists/doctors think they've got everything sussed and when it comes to it, nature's always got the upper hand.

No-one really understands how brains work so there's still a good bit of mileage left in discovery of humans, sadly people will suffer and die whilst this particular bit goes on - but again, that's nature.

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siasl74 answers:

They've just managed to cure someone of AIDS via a bone marrow transplant from someone who was genetically resistant - it gives a clue as to a solution, but the other stuff (retro-virals and the like) are merely a stop-gap solution as the virus rapidly mutates and they are hugely expensive.

Cancer is another kettle of fish - some forms of it have high rates of being cured with the variety of techniques available, but others are more resistant. Inroads are being made, though - as demonstrated by the recent release of a vaccine against cervical cancer causing stuff (there's something that is the main trigger of it, anyways, and they've got something that stops that in its tracks).

It's hugely expensive and time consuming to develop these treatments, that's all. Who knows what lab trials in petri dishes are currently ongoing, and what impacts they may have on finding a cure....

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captain-pilchard answers:

Here's a breakthrough:


Because it's largely avoidable - in most cases - maybe the urgency of finding a cure is down the pecking order.

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vultan answers:

I wonder how hard they're trying as far as HIV/AIDS goes. At the moment they've got treatments that minimise the effects of the virus, thereby allowing sufferers to stay alive for years and years, perhaps until they'd have died of natural causes anyway. That's several expensive tablets that have to be taken every single day.

The pharmaceuticals companies are probably far more intersted in continuing with that than they are with a one-injection cure or innoculation.

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tecspec answers:

Because if they found a cure the medicine companies would lose income.
I'm pretty certain that a cure could be found but there's more money to be made by producing medicines that hold the illnesses at bay.

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seacommander answers:

Coming from the world of cancer clinical trials I would say that there are two main reasons why there is as yet no cure for cancer:

Firstly cancer is not a single disease - every cancer must be regarded as unique - in other words we are dealing with hundreds of different types of cancer. Within each type of cancer there is also considerable variation from patient to patient; take breast cancer for example, amongst the many variants there are those that are stimulated by sex hormones such as oestrogen and those that are unaffected by the same hormones.

Secondly, and perhaps most importantly we just don't inderstand all of the processes that transform normal cells into cancer cells. Considerable effort is being expended in this area so that individual biochemical processes can be targeted to effect a cure rather than have to deliver systemic toxic treatments such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

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wumpus answers:

Viruses are notoriously difficult to kill; hence the similar problem with the common cold.

There isn't really any way to attack them directly.

Some new antiviral drugs have come out in recent years, and a few (such as Zovirax, used for treating cold sores among other things) are now becoming widely available and can be quite effective.

Plus there't the worldwide conspiracy to keep dishing out expensive drugs to make profits from westerners, while Africans die untreated.

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hellis852 answers:

I think it is down to money. Some drugs are available to Cancer patients but locallity is the question. They also have to rely on donations for the labs also so many variations of cancer. H. I.V is exactly the same but irratating that some contries won,t or don,t try to help themselves by using protection.Funny how we can land on the moon but not find cash for these two killers.

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