Reminder: Thursday Briefing on Stemming the Deadly Twin Epidemics of HIV and Tuberculosis

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Don’t miss tomorrow’s briefing on the global HIV and TB epidemics, featuring Dr. Anthony S. Fauci and other leading U.S. scientists. Here are the details:

Changing Course: Stemming the Deadly Twin Epidemics of HIV and Tuberculosis

Latest Data, Promising Scientific Advances, and a Call to Action on
World’s Two Leading Infectious Disease Killers

Thursday, May 20, 2010 at 9:30 a.m. – Washington, D.C.

As alarms sound about a weakening international commitment to global AIDS, scientists will gather in Washington, DC to report on potentially transformative new tools in the battle against this deadly epidemic. US policy should respond at a time when the science is more promising than ever. A diminishing commitment by the US and other donor countries has devastating implications not just for the fight against AIDS, but also the battle against its deadly partner, tuberculosis.

In this timely session – just as U.S. policymakers prepare to make key decisions about global health spending – a group of the nation’s leading scientists and advocates will discuss opportunities and challenges for combating the deadly dual epidemics of HIV and TB. Join Anthony S. Fauci, MD, director of NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and chief of the NIAID Laboratory of Immunoregulation, and other experts to discuss new scientific opportunities and urgent political strategies to reverse the course of the HIV and TB epidemics and the consequences of stagnant funding.

WHO: Anthony S. Fauci, MD, Director of NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)
William J. Burman, MD, Professor of Medicine at University of Colorado School of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases
J. Peter Cegielski, MD, Team Leader for Drug Resistant Tuberculosis at the CDC’s Division of Tuberculosis Elimination
Wafaa El-Sadr, MD, Chief of the Infectious Diseases Division at Harlem Hospital Center; Director of the Center for Infectious Diseases Epidemiology Research and Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology at Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University
Mark Harrington, Executive Director of the Treatment Action Group
Kenneth Mayer, MD, Professor of Medicine and Community Health at Brown University and Director of the Brown University AIDS Program
Rochelle P. Walensky, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital
WHEN: 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 noon
Thursday, May 20, 2010
WHERE: Reserve Officers Association/Top of the Hill Banquet and Conference Center
One Constitution Ave. NE, Washington, DC (across from the Dirksen Senate Office Building)
Ballroom B, 5th Floor
Metro: Union Station (Red Line)
RSVP: Contact Preeti Singh at psingh@burnesscommunications.com or +1 301 280 5722.

The presentations coincide with the release of a special May 2010 supplement of the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases, which focuses on the scope of HIV and TB globally and showcases advances in diagnostics, treatment, and prevention.

Among the topics to be addressed:

  • HIV treatment as prevention: What does the science tell us about this controversial concept?
  • The TB diagnostic and drug pipeline: How can current innovations revolutionize TB treatment?
  • The threat of multidrug-resistant TB (MDR-TB) and extensively drug-resistant TB (XDR-TB): Are we destined to repeat a history of complacency and neglect in our efforts to combat these virulent new strains of drug-resistant TB?

Background
The two most deadly infectious diseases worldwide, HIV and TB, claim the lives of nearly 10,000 people every day. Despite major advances in the treatment of HIV, the AIDS epidemic remains an unprecedented public health challenge, with an estimated 33 million people currently living with the virus and 2.7 million new HIV infections a year. And although scientists discovered a cure for TB more than five decades ago, there is more tuberculosis in the world today than ever before. Today, one-third of the world’s population is infected with M. tuberculosis, and there were an estimated 9.4 million new TB cases in 2008. In tandem, HIV infection and TB create a deadly synergy. TB is the number one cause of death among people with HIV. HIV/AIDS has reignited the TB epidemic across the developing world, fueling increases in MDR-TB and XDR-TB as well.

The briefing is sponsored by the Center for Global Health Policy, an initiative of the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the HIV Medicine Association, and the Global Health Council.

The Center will offer live updates from the event on its blog and via Twitter at #HIVTB.

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