AIDS and Glutathione Depletion

AIDS and glutathione depletion are closely related. People with AIDS naturally have low levels of this master antioxidant.

AIDS or Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome is a clear case of a person's weakened immune system. It is caused by the HIV virus (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) that attacks the cells of the immune system.

Since it takes years for the HIV virus to attack a huge percentage of the body's cells, a person will be diagnosed to have AIDS only after a considerable damage has been done.


What makes AIDS almost impossible to treat is its ability to attack the very cells that defend our body against diseases in the first place.

AIDS and glutathione

The HIV virus attacks the cells that make up the immune system such as the lymphocytes.

When the body's lymphocytes and other immune cells can no longer do its job, then the body is vulnerable to just any kind of diseases. You name it!

Tuberculosis, Thrush (oral, oesophageal, pulmonary, and vaginal candidiasis, Atypical Mycobacterial infections, to name a few.


Clinical studies have shown that AIDS patients have low levels of glutathione leves. In fact, GSH levels decrease rapidly upon infection with HIV. And it continues to decline as the disease progresses.


Glutathione levels rapidly decrease with AIDS since the immune cells use it to fight off oxidative stress caused by the infection. The HIV virus directly attacks the white blood cells who, in turn, use its glutathione to defend itself and the body.

Exactly how glutathione fights the HIV virus is not completely understood.

The important discover of scientists in the treatment of HIV is that an increase of intracellular levels of GSH inhibits HIV replication. Therefore, GSH helps slowing the damage of HIV to the body.

Read the study here.


AIDS and glutathione can be very well called arch-enemies. Numerous clinical trials have shown that an increase of GSH levels improve the survival rates of AIDS patients.

The Herzenberg Study

Stanford University School of Medicine geneticist Dr. Leonard Herzenberg conducted a study on the effect of a glutathione precursor, n-acetylcysteine to AIDS patients.

Herzenberg's team divided 204 HIV-positive patients into two groups. One group was given a GSH-boosting drug called N-acetylcysteine (NAC), and the other group a placebo.


Most of the 99 who received placebo (and thus maintained low glutathione levels) died within the three-year study period.

In contrast, about 80% of those who received the NAC survived, even though their CD4 cell counts indicated their survival was unlikely.

CD4 is a receptor for HIV in humans. The higher the CD4 counts in the patient's blood, the higher the volume of HIV present.

In other words, glutathione significantly increases survival for people with AIDS.

Source: Leonore A. Hersenberg, et al. Glutathione deficiency is associated with impaired survival in HIV disease. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (1997;94:1967-1972)

N-acetylcysteine replenishes glutathione in HIV infection

A study by De Rosa, et al showed that supplementation of N-acetylcysteine increases glutathione levels of HIV patients.

An 8-week double-blind, placebo-controlled trial showed that oral administration of this glutathione precursor increased the gluathione levels in the blood as well as in the T cells (a type of immune cell).

The study concluded that NAC proves a valuable therapy for pathologies with increased oxidative stress such as AIDS. Read the abstract here.

AIDS and glutathione are two most important discoveries of the decade considering about 33.4 million are infected as of 2009! In the US alone, about 1 million are infected with this deadly virus. And half of those infected have died.

An estimated 73,000 with AIDS live in Canada, 18000 in Australia, 1400 in New Zealand and 8300 in the Philippines. It is sad that around 67% of people living with HIV are in sub-Saharan Africa, a very poor region.

Speaking of Africa, did you know that Dr. Robert Keller, who invented the patented glutathione supplement, created this outstanding medicine to treat many villages in Tanzania, Africa?

Even after this death recently (June 5, 2009), he traveled to Tanzania to bring his non-toxic, inexpensive HIV/AIDS treatment to people who need it most.

You can read more about Dr. Robert Keller here.

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