Letter From the Editor
This Summer/Autumn 2001 issue of BETA presents some changes intended to facilitate our goal of delivering important HIV treatment information to our readers in a timely fashion. After much deliberation, we have decided to modify the way we report conference news and we have also decided to decrease slightly the length of each issue.
Instead of appearing in both a Conference Coverage as well as a News Briefs department, conference news now will appear exclusively in News Briefs. With the proliferation of online news sources capable of nearly instantaneous conference reporting, as well as improved coverage in mainstream daily media, we had increasingly questioned the value of reporting stories from conferences that occurred weeks to months prior to publication. Now, we plan to expand our focus on other types of reportage, such as the in-depth explorations of HIV-related conditions and treatments that have always been a mainstay of BETA and that remain of interest long after the date of publication. Also, the decrease in number of pages in each quarterly issue from 64 to 56 translates into a more practicable set of tasks for our small staff -- that is, it will allow us to put each issue of BETA together far more efficiently.
The contents reflect some of the current contextual debates in HIV/AIDS medicine, and were in no small part inspired by a historic event that took place earlier this summer. The United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS, or UNGASS, held June 25-27, began with unanimous agreement that HIV is an unmitigated global disaster and concluded with the formation of a Global AIDS Fund intended to provide resources to those countries in greatest need. During the meeting proper delegates defined the broad and devastating swath cut throughout the world today by the virus, and debated intensely such issues as vulnerability, human rights, gender, and risk groups.
In the Global Epidemic, we feature an exhaustive look at the obstacles and hopes behind one of the biggest HIV treatment-related challenges today: how can HIV treatment be delivered to the people who need it, the overwhelming majority of whom live in developing countries? In "AIDS Vaccines . . ." Bruce Mirken outlines the myriad issues faced by researchers who hope to enroll subjects in AIDS vaccine clinical trials. Often, ethical and social considerations are as daunting as the scientific challenges. And Women and HIV features a broad exploration of gender itself, particularly how differing gender roles in societies across the globe impact young people's risk of HIV infection.
Finally, this new streamlined issue includes our main feature, "Osteoporosis and HIV Disease," which thoroughly examines an emerging and serious disorder in people with HIV.
This article was provided by San Francisco AIDS Foundation. It is a part of the publication Bulletin of Experimental Treatments for AIDS. Visit San Francisco AIDS Foundation's Web site to find out more about their activities, publications and services.