New York Times Examines How Research Into HIV-Positive Long-Term Nonprogressors Could Lead to AIDS Vaccine
May 3, 2005
The New York Times on Tuesday examined how the study of long-term nonprogressors -- HIV-positive people who do not take antiretroviral drugs but whose disease is not progressing to AIDS -- potentially could help in the development of an AIDS vaccine. According to Dr. Jay Levy, director of the University of California-San Francisco's Laboratory for Tumor and AIDS Virus Research, approximately 5% of HIV-positive people can remain "medicine-free and still healthy" 10 years after becoming infected, the Times reports. However, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, defines nonprogressors as HIV-positive people not on a treatment regimen who have "so little virus in their blood that it cannot be routinely detected," and he said that only about 0.2% to 0.4% of HIV-positive people fall into this category, according to the Times. Finding long-term nonprogressors to participate in clinical research "is challenging," the Times reports. "The disappointing thing is that there's no consensus about what the long-term nonprogressors do. Different things explain it in different people," Martin Delaney, founder of the HIV information and advocacy organization Project Inform, said.
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