HIV News & Views, March 15, 2012
March 15, 2012
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Aless Piper Aless Piper: Flaming Red's Social Media Toolkit
"I truly believe that there is absolutely no reason why someone who wants to be involved, should not be involved in some way. Likewise, I believe that there is absolutely no reason for [HIV/AIDS organizations] to not be present and accounted for on social media."

B. Osten B. Osten: The Day I Was Diagnosed With HIV
"Like many of my generation, the answer to HIV and AIDS was 'Don't ask. Don't tell.' I never thought the reality of it would hit so close to home. ... Reflecting back, the telltale signs of the disease were in plain sight. I guess I just refused to see it."

Maria T. Mejia Maria T. Mejia: My Trip to Colombia, and the Importance of "Disconnecting" (Video)
"This is so important for our health! Not only have I been really taking care of my body -- I stopped smoking, started eating organic and very healthy -- but I am also learning to stop and look at the beautiful gift that is nature. ... This was a total spiritual medication for me."

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You Don't Need to Destroy Yourself!
(A recent post from the "Living With HIV" board)

"I just want to say how grateful I am to be alive and sober today. I tested HIV positive in 1985 when I was 25 years old. I believed at that time I was going to die. So, I attempted to kill myself by using drugs and alcohol for the next 25 years. By the grace of God, I have never had an OI, and still have CD4s in the 600 range. ... I thought I would share this with people who may be having a hard time accepting the fact that they are HIV positive. It is not a death sentence, as most of you probably already know. Don't go off the deep edge and use drugs like I did."

 -- Clay

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Benjamin Young, M.D., Ph.D. State of ART at CROI: New Concepts and New Integrase Inhibitors
HIV drugs in development may no longer command a lion's share of CROI as they once did, but sessions devoted to new antiretrovirals and promising paths for HIV treatment are still filled to bursting. Benjamin Young, M.D., Ph.D., summarizes the latest research on the shining compounds currently in the pipeline. (On

Richard Ellion, M.D. HIV Treatment Update From CROI 2012 (Video)
CROI 2012 featured a number of noteworthy presentations highlighting new research on HIV antiretrovirals in development, the treatment of HIV/HCV coinfection, and metabolic complications and malignancies in people with HIV. IFARA brings you this interview with leading experts Cal Cohen, M.D., and Richard Ellion, M.D., on these breaking research issues. (On

infecting cell GBV-C: A Virus That Could Be Beneficial for People Living With HIV
HIV-positive people who are infected with GB virus C (GBV-C) appear to have a lower mortality risk than people who aren't infected with the virus, according to studies presented at CROI 2012. Although very preliminary, the findings could open up a new direction in the development of new forms of HIV treatment. (On

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Ken H. (From Bronx, N.Y.) on "Jamar Rogers: Behind the Voice"

"To those with HIV and AIDS who think it's impossible ... I am 19 years old and on September 21, 2011, I was diagnosed with HIV. I keep my head strong and really clap it up to people like you who are strong enough to prove to America nothing is impossible as long as you believe."

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 India Issues "Compulsory License" Legalizing Generic Drugs; Could Have Implications for HIV Treatment Access
India's Patent Office has set an important new precedent in generic drug access: This week, it said that a local generic drugmaker could legally make and sell a generic form of a patented anti-cancer medication. The move could ultimately have a huge impact on generic HIV medication access as well.

 Ethiopians With HIV Start to Trade Holy Water for Antiretrovirals
Ethiopia is slowly embracing antiretrovirals to treat HIV/AIDS, following years in which superstitious views of the disease dominated, and affected people often shunned drugs in favor of holy water as a curative.

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Kellee Terrell When Will Male HIV/AIDS Leaders Make Women and Girls a Priority?
"We are drowning in a culture that seriously devalues women, and unfortunately, the HIV/AIDS movement is part of that same culture," our news editor Kellee Terrell writes. "I challenge male leaders to stop with the sappy pseudo-empowering rhetoric about how women and girls can overcome this epidemic and how our voices really do matter."

banner that reads: trust women; U.S. out of my uterus If Sandra Fluke's a Slut, What Am I? HIV and (Institutional) Violence Against Women
"I know all too well what character assassinations, funding restrictions, and the overall environment can do to women," writes Naina Khanna of the U.S. Positive Women's Network. "Media rampages attacking women pave the way for ... poor health outcomes that can complicate HIV vulnerability and disease progression."

Nelson George Nelson George, Director of The Announcement, Talks Magic Johnson and HIV/AIDS
The Announcement, a documentary about Magic Johnson's public HIV disclosure in 1991, debuted on March 11 to stellar reviews. talked with the film's director, Nelson George, about how HIV/AIDS has impacted his personal life and what he hopes people will take away from the movie.

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Dennis Burton, Ph.D. Update on HIV Vaccines and Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies (Video)
Dennis Burton, Ph.D., is one of the most respected, invested researchers in the field of HIV vaccine research. In this interview from IFARA, Burton offers his sense of where we are today and where we're going in work around broadly neutralizing antibodies and HIV vaccines. (on

 HIV Pill for Prevention Debated as FDA Ruling Nears
Ahead of a U.S. Food and Drug Administration expert panel review in May, HIV/AIDS advocacy groups are weighing in on efforts to get the HIV medication Truvada (tenofovir/FTC) approved for use as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) -- i.e., by HIV-negative people to help protect themselves from HIV.

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