Daily Archives: July 18, 2011

Access to HIV drugs: The good, the bad and the unmet need

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Drug companies are excluding middle-income countries – such as Brazil, Thailand, India, Columbia and China – from HIV drug discount programs where drug prices can be as much as ten times higher, according to a press release and information from a new report by Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) released Monday at the 2011 International AIDS […]

“The most important cause of HIV you’ve never heard of”

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At a recent briefing on Capitol Hill entitled, “Making the Case for Cost-Effectiveness of Vaccines for Global Health,” Peter Hotez, MD, PhD, President of the Sabin Vaccine Institute, talked about a little-known infection called schistosomiasis. A disease caused by parasitic worms, Hotez called it “the most important cause of HIV you’ve never heard of.” Moving […]

A call for clinical trials to evaluate combination prevention

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“There is no silver bullet” is a common mantra in AIDS prevention, and Dr. Robin Shattock of the Imperial College in London provided a plenary talk in that vein on combination prevention Monday at the 2011 International AIDS Conference in Rome.

Shattock defined combination prevention as comprised of four elements—behavior change, treatment, structural interventions and biomedical strategies. Devoted to biomedical strategies, his talk included an outline of interventions that could be implemented prior to HIV exposure—medical male circumcision, oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), topical PrEP and preventive vaccines and those interventions relevant subsequent to HIV exposure— antiretroviral therapy (ART), immediate treatment of infected partners and treatment for prevention…

WHO moves forward but does not release new guidance for HIV-discordant couples

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A pre-meeting session at the International AIDS Society conference in Rome was originally expected to feature the release of World Health Organization (WHO) guidance on HIV counseling and testing and access to antiretroviral therapy (ART) for “sero-discordant couples” – where one partner is HIV-infected and the other is not. Instead, the session highlighted a “work in progress” in the context of clinical trial results confirming the efficacy of HIV treatment and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) using antiretrovirals as HIV prevention…

Africa’s male circumcision programs exceed targets, grow more efficient

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The leader in the medical male circumcision (MMC) campaigns underway in sub-Saharan Africa by far, Kenya has successfully serviced 290,000 men and adolescents in the past 2.9 years. This update came from Dr. Peter Cherutich from the National AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections Control Program in Kenya, at a satellite session entitled “The Cutting Edge: What’s New in Male Circumcision,” Sunday evening preceding the 2011 International AIDS Meeting in Rome…