CROI 2010 Wrap-Up: The Evolution of Antiretroviral Therapy
A Discussion With Joel Gallant, M.D., M.P.H.
March 8, 2010
Myles Helfand: We have just swept through a lot of different studies covering a broad range of issues that are, to varying extents, related to antiretroviral therapy. How did the year's premier HIV research meeting stack up, compared to previous meetings? From a clinician's standpoint, what are your main takeaway messages from this year's CROI?
Joel Gallant: That's a good question. For years, I've been going to conferences. And my expectation is that I'm going to come back and I'm going to have a bunch of information about randomized, controlled clinical trials comparing antiretroviral therapy that will advance the field and help us know better how to treat patients. That's really been my focus, and it's been how I evaluate a conference: How many randomized, controlled trials did I hear about? How many new drugs did I hear about?
I think over the last few years, I've had to change that emphasis and realize that a conference can be a good conference even though it doesn't have a whole bunch of randomized, controlled trials. The field has changed and there are other things to learn about. So in that light, I think this was a good meeting. I think that we heard a lot of interesting stuff about complications of both HIV and HIV therapy. I think we heard more supportive data for the idea that HIV is a disease that should be treated. I think we learned more about the role of antiretroviral therapy as probably the best preventive approach that we have -- which is yet another reason to be treating HIV. And we learned, for better or for worse, that we can't necessarily assume that the drug pipeline will just continue to pump out new drugs, so we have to use the ones that we have very carefully and wisely.
I think that the conference helped to support what's going on in the guidelines right now, which was gratifying. So I think it was a pretty good meeting.
Myles Helfand: Dr. Joel Gallant is a professor of medicine and epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and he's one of the top clinician-researchers in the United States. Dr. Gallant, thank you very much for taking the time to walk us through the antiretroviral therapy highlights of CROI 2010.
Joel Gallant: My pleasure, Myles.
This transcript has been lightly edited for clarity.
Copyright © 2010 Body Health Resources Corporation. All rights reserved.
This article was provided by TheBodyPRO. It is a part of the publication The 17th Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections.
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