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Scientists discover how HIV enters cells

BMJ 1996; 312 doi: (Published 29 June 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:1628

A new, recently discovered cofactor that allows HIV-1 to enter and infect human cells could prove a useful future therapeutic target, according to US scientists writing in the 28 June issue of Science (272;1955-8).

HIV-1 infects cells by binding to the cell surface molecule called CD4. Although this mechanism has been recognised for the past decade, researchers had noted that the presence of CD4 alone was not sufficient to guarantee infection. It became clear that a cofactor was needed.

One of the authors of this recent paper is …

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