Timothy Ray Brown, also known as the “Berlin Patient”, was 54.
Brown was cured of his HIV infection in 2008. Earlier in the year, Brown received a bone marrow transplant in Berlin, Germany, to treat a different disease he underwent: acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
The bone marrow they received came from a donor whose gene caused a rare mutation, which made the donor naturally resistant to HIV, known as CCR5-delta 32, which was transferred to Brown Was.
Brown remained HIV-free – but had been living with a recurrence of leukemia for the past six months which according to the International AIDS Society (IAS) had entered his spine and brain.
“We owe a lot of gratitude to Timothy and his doctor, Gero Hueter, for opening the door for scientists to explore the concept of whether a cure for HIV is possible,” an IAS statement said.
Brown lived in Berlin from 1993 to 2010, when he worked in a café and as a German-English translator, his partner Tim wrote in a Facebook post. He was diagnosed with HIV in 1995 and was later diagnosed with AML in 2007.
Brown committed his life’s work to telling his story about his treatment for HIV and became the messenger of hope, “his partner wrote.
He said, “I am truly blessed that we shared a life together but I am heartbroken that my hero is gone now.” “Tim was truly the sweetest person in the world. Tim’s soul will live and the love and support of family and friends will help me through this most difficult time.”
Two years ago, Adam Castillejo – previously identified as a “London patient” – ended HIV antiretroviral therapy, making him the second person to ever suffer from HIV.
Unlike Brown, Castillejo underwent only one stem-cell transplant instead of two and did not have radiotherapy throughout her body as part of her treatment.
Gina Yu and Amy Woodayt of CNN contributed to this report.