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7 October 2016 VOLUME 17 ISSUE 40

Media Coverage

  • Some HIV-infected – and untreated – children do not develop AIDS. A new study shows that they control the virus in a different way from the few infected adults who remain disease-free, and sheds light on the reasons for this difference....The new findings are of interest not only with respect to the development of effective HIV vaccines; they may also provide pointers toward potential interventions for patients with chronic HIV infections.

    October 5, 2016
    Science Daily
  • Many people with HIV and the people who love and work with them are yearning for more informed public discussion about HIV. We know that accurate reporting, sound information and meaningful dialogue about HIV can literally be lifesaving -- and we celebrate when we see public attention drawn in constructive ways to the decades-long pandemic. And then, there's days like yesterday.

    October 5, 2016
    The Body
  • Immediate initiation of combination ART can reduce the risk for infection-related cancers in newly diagnosed HIV patients, a recent analysis indicated. “According to recent estimates, up to 40% of cancer cases among HIV-positive persons in the United States are infection-related; an attributable fraction 10 times as high as in the general population,” Álvaro H. Borges, University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and colleagues wrote. “HIV-positive persons also have an increased risk of infection-unrelated cancer."

    October 5, 2016
    Healio
  • An event organized by the Yale Debate Association Monday centered on what Amy Justice, a Yale-affiliated HIV/AIDS researcher, considers one of the most pressing unresolved challenges — addressing what ending the epidemic even means...in a debate on “Resolved: Prioritize finding a cure for HIV/AIDS over treatment and prevention.”

    October 4, 2016
    Yale Daily News
  • The International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) was awarded two new grants totaling about $60 million to speed up development of an AIDS vaccine and other biomedical HIV prevention tools. The grants provide funding for more than three and half years and are awarded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

    October 4, 2016
    POZ
  • A review of 55 separate studies of sex and relationships education (SRE) in schools shows that young people have many criticisms of its narrow approach and its delivery by poorly trained, embarrassed teachers....“SRE should be ‘sex-positive’ and delivered by experts who maintain clear boundaries with students,” the researchers write in BMJ Open. “Schools should acknowledge that sex is a special subject with unique challenges."

    October 4, 2016
    aidsmap
  • In December 2015, Chan and Zuckerberg created the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), [which] will provide $3 billion over the next 10 years,...concentrating on basic science, hoping that its discoveries will pay off down the line....[Their] decisions have provoked some backlash....But CZI’s efforts can add to what the world already has, bringing more research and more attention to global health.

    October 4, 2016
    Washington Post
  • In 2010 in Mali’s capital Bamako, representatives from over two dozen African health ministries signed a ‘call for action’ urging their governments to allocate at least two per cent of health ministry budgets to research.....There is no doubt that African countries have seen increased investment in health research. But with most of this increase coming from international donors, the question of who sets the research agenda remains.

    October 3, 2016
    SciDev
  • Among a sample of [917] individuals living with HIV [surveyed between 2007 and 2010] —of which a significant portion are part of key vulnerable and harder-to-reach populations—over half (54%) had concurrent mental illnesses....Mental health conditions were associated with increased barriers to accessing services, even among individuals in addiction treatment.

    October 3, 2016
    Longwoods
  • The Sunday Times yesterday reported that HIV had become undetectable in the blood of one man taking part in the RIVER study [and]... that British scientists are on the “brink of an HIV cure”. In fact, the study is still in its early stages and will not be able to describe participants as “cured” until extensive follow-up has taken place.

    October 3, 2016
    aidsmap
  • "Vaccine developers will insert pieces of HIV in the vaccine candidate. You can't become infected from the vaccine. They insert snippets that will help the body react to the virus," explained Mitchell Warren, the executive director of AVAC, a New York City-based NGO that advocates for the accelerated ethical development of HIV vaccine and prevention options.

    October 3, 2016
    The Body
  • Currently there is no preventive vaccine for the human immunodeficiency virus. This is because the virus rapidly mutates and has "unique ways of evading the immune system, and the human body seems incapable of mounting an effective immune response against it," according to the National Institutes of Health.

    October 3, 2016
    The Body
  • Dr. Sten H. Vermund, a professor of pediatrics, medicine, health policy, and obstetrics and gynecology at Vanderbilt University, has been named by President Peter Salovey and School of Medicine Dean Dr. Robert J. Alpern as the next dean of the Yale School of Public Health.

    October 3, 2016
    General
    Yale News
  • A British man with HIV hopes to become the first in the world to be cured of the disease by using a pioneer­ing new therapy designed to eradicate the virus. The 44-year-old is the first of 50 people to complete a trial of the ambitious treatment, designed by scientists and doctors from five of Britain’s leading universities. It is the first therapy created to track down and destroy HIV in every part of the body.

    October 2, 2016
    The Sunday Times
  • Russia's contempt for effective drug and HIV policies is killing its citizens....Russia has eschewed the kind of sex-education and drug policies shown to work elsewhere. Vladimir Putin's government keeps getting more prudish....Russia's foreign minister has derided opioid substitution therapy as a "narcoliberal" idea. Skimpy funding has left gaps in treatment....Stigmatisation compounds the challenge.

    October 1, 2016
    Economist
  • The country’s next national plan to tackle the twin epidemics of HIV and tuberculosis (TB) may aim to slash new HIV infections and TB deaths by about a third in the next six years....What some are calling a “discussion document” is the first such paper in South Africa’s history to propose decriminalising drug use. But civil society bodies have expressed reservations about whether the document goes far enough.

    September 30, 2016
    Bhhekisisa
  • The Replenishment launch for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria was a success — in funding and more,...particularly welcome given the Kaiser Family Foundation report showing a decrease in donor financing of the global AIDS response. Dips in donor support have turned around in the past and hopefully Replenishment signals they will again....That is why the Montreal meeting needs to be a launching pad for global health financing sufficient to make these epidemics history.

    September 30, 2016
    Huffington Post
  • Every 20 minutes, someone in the United States receives a cancer diagnosis related to human papillomavirus.... But fewer than half the girls and boys in the United States get the vaccine. Now, new research published in the Journal of the American Medical Association: Oncology, may spur parents, policy makers and medical professionals to think more about the importance of HPV vaccinations.

    September 29, 2016
    Science Daily
  • Michigan officials are probing a rare cluster of what appears to be sexually transmitted hepatitis C....All but one of the case patients -- all men who have sex with men and all HIV-positive -- have none of the usual risk factors for HCV....The CDC says that HCV is "not efficiently transmitted through sex (but) high-risk and traumatic sexual practices" can increase the risk, as can genital ulcerative disease, HIV, and a large number of sexual partners.

    September 23, 2016
    MedPage Today
  • In the context of increasing syphilis in North Carolina, investigators found that ocular disease was more likely to be accompanied by a concurrent diagnosis of HIV than were other forms of syphilis, according to Anna Cope of the CDC. And patients who were HIV-positive were almost twice as likely to have ocular syphilis than those who were HIV-negative, Cope told a late-breaker session at the 2016 STD Prevention Conference.

    September 2, 2016
    MedPage Today

Published Research

  • The latest issue of Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS is devoted to HIV vaccines. Click for the table of contents.

    October 7, 2016
    Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS
  • Being an academic scientist in this country with my skin color and accent has not been easy, but I hope that my resilience amid significant challenges offers a path for younger minority scientists.

    October 5, 2016
    Science
  • Incentives in research [can] encourage participation, help to fairly compensate participants for time and effort, retain study participants in sufficient numbers, [and] affect translation of clinical trial results to real world adoption and effectiveness....Considering its well known commitment to social justice, the HIV research community should lead the way in addressing incentive transparency.

    October 5, 2016
    The Lancet
  • Last week, Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg announced their new philanthropic initiative with the goal of “curing, preventing, and managing all diseases by the end of the century”....Big-profile gifts raise concerns for some, such as downplaying the need to increase federal dollars for basic research. But these gifts are certainly broadcasting a common message—philanthropists recognize that a long view of progress is worth investing in.

    September 30, 2016
    Science
  • Transgender individuals in this study were found to be a diverse group, with history of sex work a common feature....HIV/STI positivity during the study period was 7% for chlamydia, 5% for gonorrhoea, 5% for syphilis and 1% for HIV. Hormone use for reassignment was reported by 63% and reassignment surgery by 27%. These findings indicate transgender individuals' sexual healthcare needs [that] differ substantially from those in other countries.

    September 29, 2016
    Sex Transm Infect
  • Military metaphors are pervasive in biomedicine, including HIV research....We found the use of these metaphors to be ironic, unfortunate, and unnecessary. To overcome military metaphors we propose to (1) give them less aggressive meanings, and/or (2) replace them with more peaceful metaphors. Building on previous authors' work, we argue for the increased use of “journey” (and related) metaphors.

    September 21, 2016
    American Journal of Bioethics
  • The Incidence Patterns Model (IPM) builds on strong data sources to produce geographically disaggregated estimates of the distribution of new infections in the next year by gender and marital/sexual activity status in SSA countries....We applied the IPM to six countries in the region, identified differences in incidence patterns,...and illustrated plausible transmission patterns, providing insight into interventions to be prioritised.

    September 13, 2016
    PLoS ONE

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