A roundup of HIV-related news from Australian and selected international media.
In this edition:
Aidsmap (UK), 20 Jun
Chances of achieving an undetectable viral loadA measurement of the quantity of HIV RNA in the blood. Viral load blood test results are expressed as the number of copies (of HIV) per milliliter of blood plasma. are equally poor for patients who inject heroin, cocaine, or a combination of these two drugs, Canadian researchers report. Factors associated with a greater chance of viral suppression were baseline1. Information gathered at the beginning of a study from which variations found in the study are measured. 2. A known value or quantity with which an unknown is compared when measured or assessed. 3. The initial time point in a clinical trial, just before a participant starts to receive the experimental treatment which is being tested. At this reference point, measurable values such as CD4 count are recorded. Safety and efficacy of a drug are often determined by monitoring changes from the baseline values. viral load, methadone therapy and, most strongly of all, high levels of adherence to HIV therapy.
Bangkok Post (Thailand), 22 Jun
Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has backed a proposal to ensure equal health benefits for people living with HIV by merging medical benefits for last-stage HIV/AIDS and chronic kidney disease patients under three healthcare schemes.
Jakarta Post (Indonesia), 20 Jun
Newly appointed Indonesian Health Minister Nafsiah Mboi has responded to rumours that she will distribute free condoms to teenagers. She said in a video post that the accusations were “not true”, and that she would never endorse casual sex among teenagers by handing out condoms to them.
Straits Times (Singapore), 20 Jun
A mobile van offering anonymous testing for HIV and syphilis in Singapore has resulted in an increase in testing, especially among people aged between 20 and 39; a demographic that overlaps with the 29-and-below age group whose HIV infection rate has risen sharply in the last seven years.
Poz magazine, 21 Jun
The Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR) has announced a third year of funding for the amfAR Research Consortium on HIV Eradication (ARCHE), according to an amfAR statement.
Gay Star News, 20 Jun
Spain's Ministry of Health, Social Policy and Equality is omitting condoms from its latest HIV prevention campaign. The campaign, aimed at men who have sex with men, originally included the distribution of 100,000 condoms and lubricants intended for gay pride and related events throughout the year. LGBT groups have been unable to clarify why the Ministry has made this decision.
HIV Treatment and Care
Chicago Tribune (US), 20 Jun
An advisory committee for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention voted on Wednesday to recommended expanded use of Pfizer Inc's Prevnar 13 vaccine to include adults 19 and older with compromised immune systems due to conditions such as HIV infection, cancer and advanced kidney disease.
EurekAlert (US)/National Institute of Health:us, 20 Jun media release
Children exposed to HIV in the womb may be more likely to experience hearing loss by age 16 than are their unexposed peers, according to a study of 200 children and teenagers. The researchers estimated that hearing loss affects 9-15% of HIV-infected children and 5-8% of children who did not have HIV at birth but whose mothers had HIV infection during pregnancy.
Aidsmap (UK), 21 Jun
Measles can cause severe disease in HIV-positive children. A study has found that a booster dose of the measles vaccine produces protective antibody responses in children receiving HIV therapy. “The present study reinforces the safety and potential value of measles (re)vaccination,” write the investigators.
Reuters, 21 Jun
There is no clear link between the use of contraceptives such as the birth control pill or Depo-Provera shots and an increased risk that a woman will contract HIV, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Thursday.
UCLA Newsroom, 20 Jun media release
The first randomisedA method based on chance by which study participants are assigned to a treatment group. Randomization minimizes the differences among groups by equally distributing people with particular characteristics among all the trial arms. The researchers do not know which treatment is better. From what is known at the time, any one of the treatments chosen could be of benefit to the participant controlled study of post-exposure HIV prophylaxis for babies born in countries where the standard of care is to give the child AZT to prevent infection has confirmed that combination therapyHighly Active AntiRetroviral Therapy ??? aggressive treatment of HIV infection using several different drugs together. after birth is more effective in reducing HIV transmission.
Science & Medicine
Nine MSN news, 20 Jun
A simple rapid blood test measuring CD4 levels, developed by researchers at Melbourne's Burnet Institute, could be made available in developing countries later this year. The developers say the device could provide cost-effective testing for up to 33 million patients worldwide.
Society & Culture
Broadway world.com, 21 Jun
Following its Sydney premiere on July 2, TWISTED BROADWAY is set to return to its hometown on July 23. Joining hosts Melissa Bergland and Rhonda Burchmore is a star-spangled cast of Australia’s musical theatre finest who have banded together to help raise awareness for those living with and affected by HIV/AIDS.