Research by experts indicates that bananas have a substance that has the potential to slow down HIV infection. This finding is expected to open a new window in the treatment of prevention of HIV infection which the cure has yet not been found.
Researchers from the University of Michigan Medical School are interested in lectins, chemicals that are naturally in plants, because of its ability to stop the chain reaction of various types of infections. Laboratory test results show, BanLec, lectins found in bananas, as effective as anti-HIV medicines at this time.
A new way to stop the spread of HIV is absolutely necessary. We have a number of new HIV infections exceeds the number of individuals who received antiretroviral drugs, namely 2.5 to 1. In fact, there are no signs of an HIV vaccine would appear in the near future.
At present the use of condoms is still the main method of HIV prevention when it is used consistently and correctly. Other prevention strategies are also effective to prevent transmission through the vagina and rectum by using a drug that prevents HIV entry into target cells.
Research conducted by Michigan State University researcher shows how lectins can identify the attackers from outside the body, such as viruses, and attacks it as a pathogen, can be developed to identify the HIV virus.
Besides having the same potential anti-HIV medicine currently available, the banana lectins are also much cheaper to produce as a medicine that can reach the wider community.
“The problem for anti-HIV medicines is the ability of the virus to mutate and become resistant. However, it can be prevented by lectins. Lectins can be attached to the sugar found in various points of HIV-1 and it is estimated that the virus needs multiple mutation to get it, “said Erwin J Goldstein, PhD, professor of biological chemistry.