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November 26, 2008
Rates of Drug-Resistant Staph Increasing in People With HIV
New cases of skin infections caused by drug-resistant staph have become more common in recent years in some people living with HIV, according to a study published in the November issue of HIV Medicine.
Selzentry Receives Full FDA Approval
Pfizer announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted full approval to Pfizer’s HIV entry inhibitor, Selzentry (maraviroc), for treatment-experienced patients.
November 25, 2008
Bavituximab: A New Strategy for Fighting Viruses
Bavituximab is a new type of antiviral drug that could work against a number of different types of viral infections—possibly even against HIV itself. According to a study published in the November 23 issue of Nature Medicine and reported by Science Daily, Bavituximab has shown promise in animal studies against Pichinde virus and cytomegalovirus (CMV).
November 21, 2008
Once-Daily Intelence Could Work as First-line Treatment
Intelence (etravirine) may be potent enough for once-daily use in people who are new to antiretroviral (ARV) therapy, according to a study presented at the Ninth Congress on Drug Therapy in HIV Infection in Glasgow and reported by aidsmap.com. Intelence is currently approved for twice-a-day use in treatment-experienced patients.
Risks Remain for Late Treatment Takers
HIV-positive people who don’t start antiretroviral (ARV) therapy until their immune systems are seriously compromised have little difficulty reducing their viral loads, but they still face an increased risk of an AIDS-related disease and death for up to two years after treatment is commenced, according to a study published in the November 30 issue of AIDS.
November 19, 2008
Cancer Risk Doubled in People With HIV
Rates of cancers of the lungs, liver, head and neck in people living with HIV are twice that of their HIV-negative counterparts, according to a new study presented at the seventh annual American Association for Cancer Research International Conference on Frontiers in Cancer Research and reported by the Baltimore Sun.
November 18, 2008
Shutting Down an HIV Protein May Lead to Brain-Protecting Drugs
Researchers have discovered a new way that an HIV protein called Tat harms the brain, according to a study published in the online journal PLoS One and reported by Science Daily. The authors were able to block this damage in the laboratory, potentially opening up new avenues for developing the first drugs that could directly protect—and possibly heal—the brain from damage.
November 17, 2008
Second-line Treatment Fails Twice as Often as First-line
A person’s first antiretroviral (ARV) drug regimen remains the best opportunity he or she has in terms of keeping viral load undetectable, suggests a study presented at the Ninth International Congress on Drug Therapy in HIV Infection in Glasgow. According to AIDSmap’s review of the study, second-line regimens—notably those not containing a selection of all-new ARVs—are twice as likely to fail within a year, compared with first-line drug combinations.
November 14, 2008
Small Study Fingers 'Silent' Heart Disease in HIV-Positive Men
A team of French researchers recommends regular cardiovascular disease checkups for people on antiretroviral (ARV) therapy, even if they don’t have a history or obvious symptoms of heart problems. This suggestion stems from new study results, published in the November 30 issue of AIDS, indicating higher-than-expected rates of “silent” heart problems and exercise intolerance in a group of otherwise healthy HIV-positive men.
November 13, 2008
Treatment Interruptions May Still Have a Future
Temporarily stopping antiretroviral (ARV) therapy may turn out to be safe and advantageous in some circumstances, according to two studies presented at the Ninth International Congress on Drug Therapy in HIV Infection held in Glasgow and reported by AIDSmap.
November 12, 2008
Lipoatrophy Associated With Weakening Hips
Limb fat loss (lipoatrophy) may be associated with decreased bone density of the hips, according to a study presented at the 10th International Workshop on Adverse Drug Reactions and Lipodystrophy in HIV in London and reported by the National AIDS Treatment Advocacy Project.
November 11, 2008
HIV Can’t Hide From Specially Engineered CD8 Cells
Specially engineered “killer” CD8 cells, modified to more easily recognize and bind to HIV-infected cells, were more effective in the laboratory at controlling HIV reproduction than CD8 cells typically found in the human body, according to a press release detailing a new online report published November 9 by Nature Medicine
New GSK Program Reduces Out-of-Pocket Costs for HIV Meds
GlaxoSmithKline announced today the launch of a new Patient Savings Card to help eligible people living with HIV reduce their out-of-pocket medication expenses. Through this new program, patients are eligible to save up to $100 every month for each of their prescriptions involving antiretrovirals (ARVs) produced by GSK, for up to two years.
November 10, 2008
Astragalus Extract May Strengthen Immune Response to HIV
An extract from a plant used in traditional Chinese medicine may help protect the genes of immune system cells and, as a result, enhance their ability to fight HIV, according to a new study announced by the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) and published in The Journal of Immunology.
November 06, 2008
Stopping Treatment More Hazardous for People With Hep and HIV
Interrupting HIV therapy was associated with nearly three times as many non-AIDS-related deaths in people with HIV and either hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV) than in people infected with only HIV, according to a study published in the December 1 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases
November 05, 2008
Less Monitoring for Those Responding Well to Treatment?
Most people with HIV who’ve been on a stable antiretroviral (ARV) regimen for at least one year and continue to do well may not need to be monitored every three months as is currently recommended, according to a study published in the November 12 issue of AIDS.
November 04, 2008
Drug-Resistant Staph: Growing Concern Among People With HIV
Skin infections caused by drug-resistant staph are more common and more likely to recur in people living with HIV, according to three new studies reported at the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) last week in Washington, DC. The new data also suggest that the number of new infections caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has increased in recent years and that it is most likely to involve the buttocks and genital area in HIV-positive people.
High Number of Pulmonary Hypertension Cases in Naval HIV Cohort Study
The incidence of pulmonary hypertension—high blood pressure in the arteries that supply the lungs—is significantly higher in HIV-positive people compared with the general population, according to a National Naval Medical Center cohort study reported at the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) last week in Washington, DC.
Drug-Resistant Staph and HIV - Part 1
At the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA), Tim Horn speaks with Nancy Crum-Cianflone, MD, MPH, a researcher and physician at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego, about methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a potentially serious drug-resistant bacterial infection that is becoming increasingly more common among people living with HIV. In part one of this two-part interview, Dr. Crum-Cianflone discusses the dangers of MRSA and the higher risk of the infection in people living with HIV.
Drug-Resistant Staph and HIV - Part 2
At the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA), Tim Horn speaks with Nancy Crum-Cianflone, MD, MPH, a researcher and physician at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego, about methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a potentially serious drug-resistant bacterial infection that is becoming increasingly more common among people living with HIV.  In part two of this two-part interview, Dr. Crum-Cianflone discusses treatments for MRSA and some of the treatment challenges in HIV-positive people, as well as ways to prevent the infection.
HIV News at ICAAC/IDSA - Part 1
At the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA), Tim Horn speaks with Roy M. Gulick, MD, MPH, a professor of medicine at the Weill College of Medicine of Cornell University and the director of the Cornell Clinical Trials Unit in New York. In this first of a two-part interview, Dr. Gulick reviews some of the noteworthy HIV presentation at ICAAC/IDSA, including new data suggesting that antiretroviral therapy is most effective when started when the CD4 count falls below 500.
HIV News at ICAAC/IDSA - Part 2
At the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA), Tim Horn speaks with Roy M. Gulick, MD, MPH, a professor of medicine at the Weill College of Medicine of Cornell University and the director of the Cornell Clinical Trials Unit in New York. In this second of a two-part interview, Dr. Gulick reviews some of the noteworthy HIV presentation at ICAAC/IDSA, including new data from studies of antiretrovirals for first-time treatment takers and treatment veterans.
November 03, 2008
Major Updates to DHHS HIV Treatment Guidelines
The United States Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) today published an update to its Guidelines for the Use of Antiretroviral Agents in HIV-1-Infected Adults and Adolescents, which includes significant changes to the list of drugs recommended for people starting antiretroviral (ARV) therapy for the first time.
Truvada vs. Epzicom: The Debate Goes On
A handful of presentations at the 2008 joint meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) and the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) did little to settle the debate regarding the effectiveness of Epzicom (abacavir/lamivudine) compared with Truvada (tenofovir/emtricitabine). One presentation indicated that Epzicom may be the better bet for patients starting treatment with viral loads below 100,000 copies, and another indicated that Truvada is more likely to keep viral loads undetectable for 48 weeks when used with Norvir-boosted protease inhibitors.
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