Starting Treatment, Keep Heart Risks in Mind
Cardiovascular risk is an important variable to take into consideration
at the time of selection of antiretroviral therapy, reports Pablo
Tebas, M.D., in review of a large study.
Outbreak at North Carolina Colleges Raises Alarm
HIV has made inroads into North Carolina's college campuses,
researchers have found -- and it may not be a rare, isolated outbreak.
A unique form of HIV screening was able to identify a "sexual
network" of new HIV infections among black male college students
that appears to have grown in size over the past few years.
Persists Over Value of Three-NRTI Regimens
A set of presentations regarding antiretroviral regimens consisting
entirely of three NRTIs failed to reveal conclusive evidence that
these regimens are, or are not, prone to fail at a far greater rate
than other regimens.
York City's Gay Men May Be on Brink of New HIV Outbreak
Rates of HIV infection among gay men in New York City have remained
steady, according to new figures, but more than half of the city's
gay men routinely don't use a condom when having anal sex, a finding
that doesn't bode well for the continued stagnation of HIV rates.
Use Prevents HIV Transmission to Babies, but There's a Catch
HIV-positive pregnant women who take a single dose of the antiretroviral
drug nevirapine (Viramune) at delivery to prevent vertical HIV transmission
could develop resistance to the drug, according to a study presented
on Feb. 9.
Occurs at 5% a Year in Recently Infected Gay Men Not on Therapy
HIV-positive people can become infected with a different strain
of the virus, this study finds, although it appears as though superinfection
only occurs in people not taking HIV meds. aidsmap.com reports.
the Power of Plants
In the never-ending search for new ways to fight HIV, researchers
are investigating a family of chemicals called betulinic acid derivatives,
which have been found in lab tests to have some ability to prevent
HIV from replicating. Betulinic acid is a chemical found in some
plants and trees.
Fosamprenavir, the U.S.'s Newest Protease Inhibitor
Fosamprenavir (908, Lexiva) is a new formulation of the older
protease inhibitor amprenavir (Agenerase). Project Inform has put
together a handy fact sheet for those looking to learn more about
For more information on fosamprenavir,
HIV POLICY & DRUG ALERTS
on Backlash Against Ritonavir Price Increase
The protests against Abbott Laboratories' sharp price increase
for ritonavir (Norvir) in the U.S. have grown more public and more
vocal. As a number of HIV physicians spoke at a press conference
this week asking Abbott to rescind the price increase, U.S. healthcare
provider AIDS Healthcare Foundation said it would file an antitrust
lawsuit against the company.
Amidst this growing clamor, Abbott has officially responded a second
time in the past month, this time making
some concessions (PDF). Meanwhile, Illinois and New York have
to launch their own investigations into the motivations behind
Abbott's drug increase.
Need a little extra background on the ritonavir drug-pricing controversy?
here to see a collection of articles, protest letters and Abbott's
responses from the American Academy of HIV Medicine.
Drug Threat Includes Wasting Medication
Although the U.S. pharmaceutical supply is the "safest
in the world," acccording to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,
recent seizures of counterfeit drugs raise concerns that consumers
can no longer be certain that the drugs they receive are genuine
and safe, the Los Angeles Times reports. One of the drugs
counterfeiters have targeted is Serostim, which some HIV-positive
people take to treat wasting.
ATAC: The Activists Behind the Curtain
Who are the people behind the AIDS Treatment Activists Coalition,
a group spearheading efforts to pressure U.S. politicians into providing
sorely needed funds for the country's AIDS Drug Assistance Programs?
AIDS advocate Gary Karch took a closer look as he attended ATAC's
first-ever summit meeting in December.
NIAID Advisory Council Members Appointed
Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy G. Thompson announced
five appointments to the National Advisory Allergy and Infectious
Diseases (NIAID) Council, the principal advisory body of NIAID.
RISK, PREVENTION & OUTREACH
Marks Fourth Black HIV/AIDS Awareness Day
Although African Americans represent about 12 percent of the
U.S. population, more than 50 percent of all AIDS cases diagnosed
in 2002 in the U.S. were among African Americans. To bring attention
to this community, Feb. 7 marked the fourth annual National Black
HIV/AIDS Awareness Day. Read this article for a look at some of
the events that took place to commemorate the day.
For more information on African Americans and HIV, browse through
collection of articles.
Women Get SMART About HIV
A group of women in New York City's Harlem neighborhood aren't
taking the area's escalating HIV numbers sitting down: They've formed
a support group called SMART specifically to provide information
and treatment education to minority women with HIV.
Looking for HIV support in your community? Visit The Body's extensive
listing of AIDS hotlines
and services throughout the U.S.
Risk Underestimated Among Asian Americans
Asian Americans are often overlooked as an HIV-risk group not
just by the healthcare community at large, but by Asian Americans
themselves. The risk is real, however: This article provides an
overview of the HIV/AIDS situation among Asians and Pacific Islanders
living in New York City.
Findings Into How the Mouth Protects Against HIV
U.S. researchers say that a pair of molecules found within the
lining of the mouth — human beta-defensins 2 and 3 (hBD2 and hBD3)
— may be at least part of the reason why it's so hard to become
orally infected with HIV.
Shows Promise Against Resistant HBV
When chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) becomes resistant to the
standard 3TC (lamivudine, Epivir) treatment, the antiviral adefovir
(Preveon), alone or in combination with ongoing 3TC therapy, appears
to be effective, according to a study in the medical journal Gastroenterology.
C Epidemic Worsens
Hepatitis C is rapidly spreading, especially in much of Europe.
Read some of the latest research on this growing epidemic and how
it affects people living with HIV.
Are MRSA and VRE?
Two types of drug-resistant bacteria known as MRSA and VRE don't
pose much of a threat to completely healthy people, but can be a
risk among people with HIV. Learn more about these two nasty little
germs and what HIV-positive people can do to avoid becoming infected.
OUTSIDE THE U.S.
AIDS Activism Grows — in New York
Although Russia has one of the world's fastest growing HIV infection
rates, its AIDS advocacy movement has only just begun to form. A
special program in New York City, however, trains Central and Eastern
European activists on how to create an effective advocacy movement
One Russian AIDS advocate who took part in this New York City program
has written about his experiences there; click
here to read what he had to say.
Treatment: It Requires More Than Research
In Africa, the treatment of life-threatening diseases like tuberculosis
and HIV is about more than just developing drugs in a laboratory,
says Winstone Zulu, an AIDS treatment activist in Zambia. "It's
not only about the germs and the pills, but also about the people
under the microscopes and behind PowerPoint presentations. ... Tuberculosis
cannot be fought in the labs alone, and I think this is what has
Steps Up Prevention Efforts as Holiday Draws Near
The Brazilian government began distributing what it says is
a "record" 10 million condoms as part of a campaign to
help limit the spread of HIV during the Carnival season, which begins
in less than two weeks and is a time when they say people are more
likely to engage in casual sex.
Doctor Group Pushes for U.S. Assistance in Global AIDS Battle
The International Association of Physicians in AIDS Care is
one among many organizations pressing the Bush administration for
better funding of the global fight against HIV. In this release
the prominent group outlines its positions.
a Valentine's Day e-card from Visual AIDS! Our online collection
features artwork by Keith Haring and other artists. Spread HIV awareness
and share your love — safely!