June #92 : Markdown for the Count - by Alyson Browett

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Table of Contents

Hitt and Run

Wish You Were Here?

A Kennedy Goes Global

¡Neggie Niños!


Iraq, War & HIV

Follow the Diva

POX and All

ADAP to Feds: $ ASAP

The TAC Offensive

Neg & Pos


Dig That Pipeline!

Dem Dere Eyes

Life Inside With C

That Bouncing Bug!

Well, G Whiz!

Smears For Straights?

Kentucky Fried Friendship

Soak 'N' Snooze

Markdown for the Count



Most Popular Lessons

The HIV Life Cycle


Herpes Simplex Virus

Syphilis & Neurosyphilis

Treatments for Opportunistic Infections (OIs)

What is AIDS & HIV?

Hepatitis & HIV

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June 2003

Markdown for the Count

by Alyson Browett

Tracking HIV progression (and whether or not you need meds) starts with tabulating T cells. But CD4 counts don’t come fast or cheap: Current tests cost about $30 a pop and demand a $75,000 machine the size of a refrigerator, plus several days’ wait for results. That’s why Harvard’s William Rodriguez, MD, and colleagues stirred up the recent Retrovirus confab with their new, superfast, supercheap CD4 test that’s nearly as precise as the standard. Put a drop of blood on a stamp-sized microchip device, stick it in a $600 digital camera–sized reader, and—presto!—Results in 10 minutes. All for a buck! Rodriguez says his easy-tote test could be a big-time boon for cash-strapped caregivers both here and overseas, where he says docs are “flying blind” by treating HIVers based on how sick they look. Despite the buzz, Rodriguez says he needs $5 million to bring it to market this year—no chump challenge since there’s “not a lot of sexiness around diagnostics.” Hey, since when isn’t fast-and-cheap sexy?

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