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Press Release

Support Research on Starting Treatment -- Endorse the START Study by April 30, 2010!

April 28, 2010

Request for Endorsement of the START Study

Please help get the word out and distribute widely.

Dear Colleagues,

We are requesting individual and organizational endorsements in support of a statement from the INSIGHT (International Network for Strategic Initiatives in Global HIV Trials) Community Advisory Board, one of six HIV clinical trials networks funded by the National Institutes of Health.

As you may know, the U.S. HIV Treatment Guidelines Panel recently changed its recommendation for when to start HIV treatment, raising it from 350 to 500 CD4 cells. This change was not without controversy, since there is no conclusive evidence that starting treatment earlier is better. A large-scale randomized control trial that could clearly provide this evidence -- called START (Strategic Timing of Antiretroviral Treatment) -- is still in its critical pilot phase.

As the result of this new treatment recommendation, there are now concerns that INSIGHT Network's ability to enroll the expected 4,000 volunteers for START might be jeopardized. What's more, as we face longer waiting lists for AIDS Drug Assistance Programs and the call for treating everyone who test positive, we need the critical answers that can be provided by the START trial more than ever, or we risk putting people on treatment prematurely, with unknown long-term side effects and the risk of drug resistance in life-long therapy.

We believe that the priority for HIV-positive people is to have accurate, reliable data on both the risks and benefits of earlier treatment in order to base any decision for when to start treatment. We fully support this study and invite you to endorse the importance of this research.

To read the statement and to lend your support for this important study, please go to:

Deadline for endorsements is April 30, 2010.

Current Organizational Endorsers

2 God B The Glory, Women Supportive Housing Program
Acadiana Cares
AIDS Action Baltimore
AIDS Action Committee of MA
AIDS Alabama
AIDS Alliance for Faith and Health
AIDS Community Research Consortium
AIDS Community Research Initiative of America
AIDS Education Global Information System
AIDS Services for the Monadnock region
AIDS Services of Dallas
AIDS Treatment Activist Coalition
AIDS/HIV Health Alternatives
Beacons of H.O.P.E.
Black AIDS Memphis
Boston Living Center
Central City AIDS Network
Christie's Place
Commnity Partners CAB Member
Common Ground -- the Westside HIV Community Center
Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project (CHAMP)
Community Research Initiative
Denver Health
Duke University AIDS Research and Treatment Community Advisory Board
Foundation for Integrative AIDS Research (FIAR)
Founder, POZ Magazine
Gay City News
Global Network of People Living with HIV/AIDS (GNP+/NA)
Grupo de Trabajo sobre Tratamientos del VIH (gTt)
Harm Reduction Institute
Health Equities institute, San Francisco State University
Hepatitis, AIDS, Research Trust
HIV Dental Alliance
HIV/AIDS Law Project
Holley Gerald Foundation
International Community of Women Living with HIV and AIDS-North American Region (ICW-NA)
Italian League For Fighting Aids -- LILA
Jo-Ray House Inc
LaGender Inc.
Lower East Side Harm Reduction Center
McGregor Clinic, Inc.
Metropolitan Community Health Services
National Coalition for LGBT Health
National Pediatric AIDS Network
New Destiny Recovery Ministry
New York Law School
North American Old Catholic Church
Northwestern University
Outer Cape Dental Center
Pacientes de Sida pro Politica Sana
Philadelphia FIGHT
Positive Women's Network
Progressive Health partners International
Public Personalities Against AIDS Trust
PWA Coalition Colorado
Ruth M. Rothstein CORE Center
ryan white part-c
SomeoneCares of Atlanta
South Carolina Campaign to End AIDS (SC-C2EA)
Status C Unknown
SUNY Downstate Medical Center
Tapestry Health
Test Positive Aware Network
The Afiya Center HIV Prevention & Sexual Reproductive Justice
The AIDS Institute
The Center for HIV Law and Policy
The Montefiore Women's Center
tom waddell clinic
Treatment Action Group
Treatment Education Network
Triad Health Project
Twin States Network
University of Minnesota
Virginia Commonwealth University
West Ohio Conference AIDS Ministry
Zephyr L.T.N.P. Foundation, Inc.

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This article was provided by INSIGHT Network Community Advisory Board.
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