Email Updates

Search form

You are here

25 September 2015 VOLUME 16 ISSUE 39

Media Coverage

  • Otilia Makanganise of Tsumele village in Mwenezi district had been finding it difficult to fend for her family... Otilia and her husband — who have four children — are both HIV positive and require a nutritious diet to augment the life-saving antiretroviral drugs they are taking... “But thanks to the dam project, ...our lives have changed for the better,” she said. The Tsvimborume weir dam and garden project were introduced by the World Food Programme in conjunction with the Japanese government.

    September 24, 2015
    News Day
  • Starpharma has received marketing approval in the European Union for VivaGel BV for treatment and rapid relief of bacterial vaginosis (BV)....BV is the most common vaginal infection worldwide...and is associated with increased risk of pre-term births, miscarriage, and transmission and acquisition of STIs, including genital herpes and HIV/AIDS....The phase 3 clinical trial programme for VivaGel BV for prevention of recurrent BV is also progressing...

    September 24, 2015
    Business Wire
  • "We've let these populations of color down by not targeting disparities," says Austin PrEP Access Project Exec­u­tive Director Ben Walker. African-Amer­i­cans...made up 21.9 percent of Travis County's HIV-positive residents in 2012, despite only making up 8.9 percent of its overall population.... Walker says his clinic sees people who ask their doctors about using PrEP against HIV, but are told they need to use condoms instead...."We have a culture that doesn't want to talk about sex," explains Walker.

    September 24, 2015
    Austin Chronicle
  • Chinese First Lady Peng Liyuan on Wednesday visited [the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center]...and called for closer bilateral cooperation in health care....Peng also...visited a lab of the Fred Hutch HIV Vaccine Trials Network, where she was briefed by Dr. Julie McElrath on the latest development of the HIV vaccine research.

    September 24, 2015
    Shanghai Daily
  • Community activism has played a crucial role in achieving better access to HIV treatment. Although there is comparatively better access to treatment now,...there is a need for community activists to monitor service provision [as] national governments increasingly take responsibility for delivery of HIV services. We need to repoliticize the AIDS movement to counter the complacency and bureaucratization of community engagement.

    September 23, 2015
    Voices
  • Another kind of war on drugs broke out this week, in the form of a price hike and a public outrage. Overnight, Turing Pharmaceuticals raised the price of Daraprim from $13.50 to $750, a more than 5,000 percent increase. Daraprim is used to treat toxoplasmosis...[and] as part of cancer and HIV treatments. Art Caplan, Head of the Division of Medical Ethics at NYU Langone Medical Center...[said] on Boston Public Radio,...“The real issue is: why are prices for drugs so high, why are we paying through the nose in the United States when other countries pay far less?”

    September 23, 2015
    WGBH News
  • Scripps Florida scientists have been awarded nearly $6 million dollars from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a revolutionary HIV/AIDS alternative vaccine that has demonstrated potential in animal testing,...the first grant awarded by the Gates Foundation to a Scripps Florida scientist. "This grant is helping us take technology we've developed to human clinical trials," said Michael Farzan, who leads a Scripps laboratory of 12 researchers.

    September 23, 2015
    Bloomberg
  • The Baltimore Health Department has received more than $20 million in federal funding for a new HIV strategy that will target gay men and transgender people and push a drug that can prevent people from contracting the disease. Under the initiative to be developed with two grants from the Centers for Disease Control, city officials will partner directly with 11 community and provider groups in the largest collaboration in recent history to combat HIV.

    September 23, 2015
    Baltimore Sun
  • The city of Dearborn, Mich., has agreed to pay $40,000 to a Michigan woman who was ticketed by a police officer because she had HIV. Shalandra Jones of Detroit had sued the city of Dearborn in January 2014 after police Officer David Lacey berated her for not telling him earlier in a traffic stop that she had HIV. He expressed concern about contracting a disease, according to a video of the 2012 traffic stop.

    September 22, 2015
    USA Today
  • This week in Bangkok, experts and MSM community members, including PrEP users, are holding the first meeting of its kind in Asia, to work out a plan on how the medication can be rolled out across the region....The rollout of PrEP faces challenges as users need to have regular medical check-ups and evaluation, including HIV tests, and its effectiveness is highly dependent on adherence....The key to PrEP's success in Asia will be raising awareness and increasing knowledge on how to use the regime correctly.

    September 22, 2015
    Bangkok Post
  • French researchers have developed a vaginal ring made from silicone that could deliver preventive treatments for both HIV and herpes...at a lower cost than other rings. The ring in this study, performed by scientists at University Jean Monnet in Saint-Etienne, France, released acyclovir for herpes at between 1.5 and 3.5 mg per day, and the HIV drug tenofovir for 50 days at a time, according to a report from the American Society for Microbiology.

    September 22, 2015
    Fierce Drug Delivery
  • Vermont...ranked first in Trojan's annual 'State By State Safer Sex Index'....Trojan ranked the states on two factors: contraception and sexually transmitted diseases. For STD rates, the company looked at HIV, gonorrhea and syphilis rates per every 100,000 citizens and examined the percentage of adults in each state who reported having received an HIV test in their lifetime....The Northeast United States fared far better than other parts of the United States. Unfortunately, the South didn't fare as well in the ranking.

    September 21, 2015
    Latina
  • In March of this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it would be awarding more than $185 million to prevent HIV among men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender people, particularly African Americans and Latinos. This month, the CDC announced the 17 organizations that will receive the funding.

    September 21, 2015
    POZ
  • Research...in Lusaka has revealed that girls living with HIV/AIDS lack support on how to disclose their status.... Zambia AIDS Related Tuberculosis Project head of social science and director Virginia Bonds said study participants received mixed messages around disclosure from clinic staff, teachers and parents: “For example, some clinics encouraged disclosure to boyfriends to limit risks of transmission, while some parents and guardians discouraged disclosure to minimise stigma, both for the participants and their families."

    September 21, 2015
    Daily Mail
  • Some heavy-hitting HIV activists have signed on to Janssen's ongoing "Wisdom" campaign, headlining a share-your-story campaign for people living with the disease. The Johnson & Johnson unit will award up to $20,000 in charitable donations as part of the effort, which ties in the company's latest HIV brand, Prezcobix.

    September 21, 2015
    FiercePharma
  • The fifth-grader with cornrows stepped from an elevator at Children’s National Medical Center and walked over polished tile floor she had first crossed in a baby carrier....Hundreds of children born with HIV have been brought to this hospital for treatment by medical specialists who become surrogate aunts and uncles....They do all of this without telling their youngest patients why. And when the time comes to tell them as they reach puberty, the staff plans for weeks how to do it, debating whether the kids are ready to know — whether they can handle it.

    September 20, 2015
    Washington Post
  • Reverend Phumzile Mabuzela, Executive Director of International Network of Religious Leaders Living with or Personally Affected by HIV and AIDS, has called on churches to integrate sexual education into the Sunday school curricula. She said the Church has failed in empowering leadership to respond to real issues like rape and it is imperative for the missions to educate and be educated on social justice issues from a faith or spiritual perspective....Rev Mabuzela said the church had struggled to find positive terminology to discuss sexuality and sex.

    September 20, 2015
    Ghana Web
  • According to [Kenya's] National AIDS Control Council, 435,225 adolescents (ages 10 to 19) are HIV positive while another 119,899 have the virus “but are not yet identified”. About 7,500 adolescents died of the disease last year due to delayed treatment and the stigma and discrimination associated with being HIV positive. The new infections were attributed to early sexual encounters, where 20 per cent of youth between 15 and 24 had their first sexual experience before their 15th birthday.

    September 20, 2015
    Daily Nation
  • An ART regimen consisting of once-daily Stribild may be safer and more effective in women with HIV-1 infection than the standard multidrug combination treatment, according to a study presented here at ICAAC 2015. This is the first ART study to exclusively enroll women, and its results contrasted with those of a previous study of the drug which enrolled mostly men, according to Sally Hodder, MD, director of the West Virginia Clinical and Translational Science Institute....A total of 575 participants from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America were enrolled in the study.

    September 20, 2015
    Healio
  • Women with HIV would do better with a widely used single-pill treatment regimen than with an often-recommended multipill schedule....That's the bottom line in [the Women AntiretroViral Efficacy and Safety (WAVES) study...,] the first randomized double-blind trial of HIV drugs conducted only among women....[M]ost previous comparative studies of HIV drugs have had no more than about 20 percent women, making it difficult, if not impossible, to tease out any differences in effects.

    September 20, 2015
    MedPage Today
  • A new pill designed to block HIV infections is being described as a "game changer" by some of the 450 gay men taking part in the Australian trials of the drug....Two PrEP trials are underway in Sydney and Brisbane. Dr Mark Bloch is supervising the Sydney trial which will run over two-and-a-half years and involves 300 men at risk of contracting HIV. "So far there has not been one transmission of HIV. It's still early days but that's very encouraging," he said.

    September 20, 2015
    ABC Radio Australia
  • The “largest gathering ever of world leaders”; a “step-change” in aid; a “massive step forward for humanity”: the UN meeting on September 25th has had politicians, donors and aid workers reaching for superlatives (as well as jargon). Prime ministers, presidents and the pope will gather in New York to unveil the “Sustainable Development Goals” (SDGs) that are supposed to shape aid and development for the next 15 years. Is the hoopla justified?

    September 19, 2015
    Economist
  • In February 1990, 19-year-old Anne Pilon walked into the AIDS Committee of Ottawa's office for the first time. "It was a really scary time. But at the same time, amazing," said Pilon....Pilon's story is just one of many that appear in a new book called A-C-O-X-X-X: Our Words, Our Stories, Our Lives, published to commemorate the committee's 30th anniversary. In the book, Pilon remembers how she was the first HIV-positive heterosexual woman to use the centre, which in the early 1990s was mostly run by gay men, for gay men.

    September 19, 2015
    CBC News
  • Sexual transmission of hepatitis C virus (HCV) is occurring among HIV-positive men who have sex with men, associated with receptive anal sex and non-injection drug use, and a small subset of men may be prone to recurrent infection after being cured of hepatitis C, according to a meta-analysis reported in the August 7 online edition of AIDS.

    September 18, 2015
    aidsmap
  • The statement, posted on a State Department website, says sexual rights include people’s “right to have control over and decide freely and responsibly on matters related to their sexuality, including sexual and reproductive health, free of coercion, discrimination, and violence.” The announcement comes days before more than 150 world leaders gather at the U.N. to launch an ambitious set of development goals, including one of gender equality.

    September 18, 2015
    Washington Post
  • It’s the mission of African-American women church leaders in the Chicago area who have joined forces to combat the spread of HIV/AIDS and other life-threatening health disparities in their communities... The First Ladies Health Initiative, representing pastors’ wives from 70 Chicagoland churches and Northwest Indiana, is partnering with its sponsor Walgreens, bioLytical Laboratories and the Bishop Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation to offer free health tests simultaneously at churches here, Sunday, September 27.

    September 18, 2015
    Atlanta Daily World
  • A new study sponsored by Trojan condoms has found that Floridians are pretty bad at sex — the safe kind, that is. According to the State by State Safer Sex Index, Florida ranks 47th in the nation for its high rates of sexually transmitted diseases and lack of contraception education. Actually, much of the southeast United States ranks lowest on the study's list.

    September 18, 2015
    Tampa Bay Times
  • September 16 this year marked the fourth annual Global Female Condom Day – an annual event used for education and advocacy to increase awareness, access and use of female condoms. To mark the event, the Ghana Health Service, Ghana AIDS Commission and the Society for Women and AIDS in Africa...organized a programme to enlighten women at Agbobgloshie and its environs on the use of the female condom.

    September 18, 2015
    Ghana Web
  • HIV latency depends on the activity of proteins from the human host called histone deacetylases, and previous work has shown that HDAC inhibitors can disrupt HIV latency. A study published on September 17th in PLOS Pathogens reports results from a clinical trial of an HDAC inhibitor that had shown potential in preclinical studies and answers open questions about the potential use of these drugs in strategies to eliminate HIV from the body.

    September 17, 2015
    Science Daily
  • As a gay man, the Boston attorney thought he was doing the responsible thing when he asked his doctor to prescribe Truvada, a drug hailed as a way to halt the spread of AIDS. But when he tried to get long-term care insurance, Mutual of Omaha turned him down, saying it does not offer coverage to anyone who takes the drug. Now, the man is planning to sue the insurer, alleging he was discriminated against because he is gay.

    September 17, 2015
    AP
  • The annual Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) is... usually a cornucopia of clinical and basic research in infectious diseases and anti-infective therapy. This year's ICAAC is no exception and might even be slight broader, since it is a joint affair, including the International Society of Chemotherapy's International Congress of Chemotherapy and Infection (ICC).

    September 16, 2015
    MedPage Today
  • Dr. Anthony Fauci was remembering when he knew virtually all of his AIDS patients would die within months... and the bitter frustration of being trained to be a healer and having no recourse,...talking about “one of the greatest accomplishments in the history of medicine,”...and reviewing the research...that adds up, he says, to “absolutely no excuse whatsoever for not putting every single person with HIV on treatment.”

    September 16, 2015
    Science Speaks
  • A new Sex Work Law Map, developed by the Institute of Development Studies, has been launched that provides a global perspective on female sex work by displaying a detailed summary of the laws, regulations and policies in over 75 countries... The interactive map reveals trends and information that will benefit sexuality activists, human rights defenders, those with an interest in sustainable development and public health, journalists, legal practitioners, policy analysts and academics.

    September 15, 2015
    Institute of Development Studies

Published Research

  • Four hundred newly screened HIV-positive patients were randomly assigned to receive posttest counseling alone or posttest counseling and monthly home counseling visits by community support agents to encourage them go back for routine pre-ARV care. In all models generated, participants receiving monthly home counseling visits were 2.5 times more likely to be retained in pre-ARV compared with those in standard care over a period of 24 months.

    October 1, 2015
    JAIDS
  • Primary and secondary cases reported during 2009–2010 from 4 US sites were crossmatched with local HIV surveillance registries to identify syphilis case-persons infected with HIV before or shortly after the syphilis diagnosis. We identified 1675 cases of incident primary or secondary syphilis among persons with HIV. More than half of syphilis case-persons identified with HIV had a detectable viral load collected within 6 months of the syphilis diagnosis. This suggests virologic and active behavioral risk for transmitting HIV.

    October 1, 2015
    JAIDS
  • Of 4077 women enrolled, 3789 had complete data; 26 percent and 5 percent reported having a partner >5 and >10 years older at enrollment, respectively. Reporting a partner >5 years older or >10 older was not associated with HIV-1 acquisition. These data corroborate recent reports and may suggest a shift in local epidemiology of heterosexual HIV-1 transmission.

    October 1, 2015
    JAIDS
  • Positive Charge (PC) is a linkage to HIV care initiative implemented by AIDS United with sites in New York, Chicago, Louisiana, North Carolina, and the San Francisco/Bay Area. The study found that PC’s five unique evidence-based linkage to care programs have relatively low costs per client served and highly achievable cost-saving and cost-effectiveness thresholds [and] have the potential to be a highly productive use of public health resources.

    October 1, 2015
    AIDS and Behavior
  • Latinos represent a growing proportion of HIV cases in North Carolina. Immigrants were more likely to report heterosexual risk than US-born Latinos. While some Latinos immigrate with HIV infection, many immigrants are involved in transmission networks after arrival, particularly MSM. HIV testing and prevention interventions must consider this heterogeneity and may be better targeted by integrating phylogenetic analyses.

    October 1, 2015
    AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses
  • Jan-Walter De Neve and colleagues provide compelling evidence of a causal relation between secondary education and HIV incidence... [They]... conclude that secondary schooling is similarly cost effective for HIV prevention as pre-exposure prophylaxis, but more expensive than male circumcision. However, they also highlight that this estimate excludes other benefits of schooling.

    October 1, 2015
    Lancet
  • We [develop and calibrate an HIV transmission model] with data from South Africa and simulate the impacts of universal access to treatment along with HIV education scale-up on prevalence, incidence, and HIV-related deaths over a course of 15 years. Our results show that the...combined strategy of universal access to treatment and HIV education scale-up decreases the incidence rate by 74 percent over the course of 15 years, whereas universal access to treatment and HIV education scale up will separately decrease that by 43 percent and 8 percent, respectively.

    September 30, 2015
    Medicine
  • Data from the VOICE study showing greater HIV-1 acquisition among women who use depot medroxyprogesterone acetate (DMPA) than injectable norethisterone (NET-EN) contraception elicited comment suggesting that use of DMPA be limited. The fundamental uncertainty, not addressed by the VOICE data or recent meta-analyses of other observational data..., is whether DMPA increases susceptibility to HIV, or whether women at increased risk of HIV are more likely to use DMPA.

    September 24, 2015
    Lancet
  • Among study participants..., most (70.7 percent) defaulted before formal discharge. Pain before and after PrePex device removal were associated with discharge status, although very few cases were reported....We hypothesize that clients stopped returning once they determined they were healed. We recommend less frequent follow-up protocols to encourage clinical visits until formal discharge.... We believe PrePex MC is a practical circumcision strategy in Rwanda and in sub-Saharan Africa.

    September 23, 2015
    PLoS ONE
  • Of all the uncircumcised participants (n=1,790), 55.2 percent were willing to accept MC; 67.3 percent thought MC could improve their sexual partners’ hygiene and 46.3 percent believed HIV and sexually transmitted diseases could be partially prevented by MC. MC’s acceptability was associated with three factors: the redundant foreskin, knowing the hazard of having a redundant foreskin, and enhancing sexual pleasure. Implementation of an MC programme among this population is feasible.

    September 21, 2015
    PLoS ONE
  • Interactive GIS maps created by overlapping facility data including roads and infrastructure with population and service delivery data permitted strategic deployment of mobile voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC) services to underserved rural communities. The percentage of VMMCs performed in rural areas jumped from 48 percent in 2011 to 93 percent in 2014.

    September 18, 2015
    GHSP Journal
  • In a new study in PLOS Biology, José Cueva and colleagues measured the mutation rate of HIV-1...in patient´s cells. They show that the HIV-1 mutation rate is far higher than previously thought, due mainly to the efforts of a cellular enzyme. The high rate of mutation caused by the enzyme may protect the host from virulence but may also promote evolution of HIV to escape that protection. More work in larger numbers of patients will be needed to confirm these results, but the implications are important for understanding, and treating, HIV infection.

    September 16, 2015
    PLoS Biology
  • Knowledge of HIV-positive status is associated with more frequent condom use in Mozambique. However, most HIV-infected persons are unaware of their serostatus, with men and persons in the poorest wealth quintile being more likely to be unaware. These findings support calls for expanded HIV testing, especially among groups less likely to be aware of their HIV status and key populations at higher risk for infection.

    September 15, 2015
    PLoS ONE
  • This study supports the safety and acceptability of ShangRing male circumcision during 2–3 years of follow-up. It should allay worries that the ShangRing procedure could lead to delayed complications later than the observation period of most clinical studies.

    September 14, 2015
    PLoS One
  • Hofmeyr and colleagues posit that providers are more likely to give norethisterone (Net-En) to women considered “reliable”, which could explain the observed higher risk of HIV in women using depot medroxyprogersterone acetate (DMPA) in the VOICE study. They also note that providers are more likely to give Net-En to younger women....Although these differences were seen, we think that behaviours are likely to be less different between DMPA and Net-En users than between women using DMPA and those using condoms alone or no contraceptive method.

    September 1, 2015
    The Lancet
  • This special issue acts to reassert a long-standing political economy approach to HIV, and adapt it to reflect new competing theoretical approaches and new policy initiatives. However, there are many challenges to anyone constructing an alternative analytical approach to HIV....[T]his special issue aims...to connect the current debates about HIV/AIDS to larger discussions about globalisation, class differentiation, inequity and uneven development in African countries.

    August 21, 2015
    Review of African Political Economy
  • This article examines the Ebola epidemic of 2014 and compares it to the initial HIV/AIDS epidemic of the 1980s. We examine similarities and differences between the two outbreaks and end with policy suggestions for future disease management….A key lesson we must take from both epidemics is the role of prevention.

    August 20, 2015
    Canadian Journal of African Studies
  • PLGA nanoparticles with encapsulated rilpivirine...offered significant protection to BLT humanized mice from a vaginal high-dose HIV-1 challenge. A different nanosuspension of crystalline rilpivirine administered intramuscularly protected BLT mice from a single vaginal high-dose HIV-1 challenge....Together, our results demonstrate that topically- or systemically administered rilpivirine offers significant coitus-dependent or coitus-independent protection from HIV infection.

    August 13, 2015
    PLoS ONE
  • Overcoming the hurdles required to elicit bnAbs [broadly neutralizing antibodies] has become a major focus of HIV-1 vaccine development. Here, we discuss a less studied problem, the structural basis of protection (and its evasion) by antibodies that protect only by potent Fc-mediated effector function.

    June 3, 2015
    Viruses

Announcements