Aids has become the leading cause of death world-wide. Much research has been done on the causal agent of this disease, the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). HIV infection in the western world no longer inevitably precedes the disease AIDS, due to the development of a highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART). However, curing HIV-infected patients seems to be still impossible since several viral reservoirs are not affected by HAART. Replication competent HIV in latentlyinfected CD4+ memory T cells forms currently the best–characterized long term reservoir of HIV in patients. For eradication of this viral reservoir reactivation of the viral life cycle is essential. Consequently, the current research goal is reactivation of the latent reservoir and thereby eradication of latent virus. In this thesis, recent literature on the molecular mechanisms of HIV latency and reactivation in CD4+ memory T cells will be discussed. Profound understanding of the molecular mechanisms will hopefully lead to the development of more adequate therapeutics to cure HIV infection
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