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One patient has now been followed for two years and the other for three-and-a-half years, and both have "no traces of virus" in their plasma or purified T-cells; the researchers next plan to look for virus in various body tissues.
The two men also experienced decreases in HIV-specific antibodies.
But VISCONTI patients had HLA genetic patterns different from those of elite controllers, Saez-Ciron explained.
In addition, their viral reservoirs were largely made up of short-lived T-cells, while long-lived cells that could harbour virus for a many years contributed very little.
Administration of vorinostat disrupts HIV-1 latency in patients on antiretroviral therapy. NAM Publications Registered office: Acorn House, 314-320 Gray’s Inn Road, London, WC1X 8DP Company limited by guarantee.
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) causes HIV infection and AIDS. As the immune system weakens, the body is vulnerable to life-threatening infections and cancers.
IAS president-elect Francoise Barré-Sinoussi said that the Towards an HIV Cure initiative has established an ethics working group to address these issues.
The virus can maintain long-term latency in these, and potentially other reservoirs, but if the cells are activated, viral production can resume.
The donor cells replaced Brown's own cells, and after five years he remains off antiretroviral treatment with no evidence of replication-competent HIV in his blood, immune cells or gut tissue.
The Kuritzkes group identified two HIV-positive lymphoma patients who received transplants with milder "reduced intensity conditioning" chemotherapy and no whole-body radiation.
In the third study, Charline Bacchus, Asier Saez-Ciron and colleagues in France looked at outcomes among a group of people – dubbed the VISCONTI cohort – who started standard antiretroviral treatment very early, on average within 40 days after HIV infection.
An analysis of 14 patients in this group showed that after being on ART for a median of three years, they have been able to control HIV for several years after stopping treatment.