Posts tagged: HIV AIDS

The long and winding road: A step-by-step trek towards an HIV cure

The news just keeps rolling in!

After the recent revelation that a Mississippi baby seems to have been functionally cured of AIDS, it seems that the same treatment may work in adults.

Results from a recent study conducted by the Pasteur Institute in Paris showed that early treatment appears to have put HIV in what seems to be permanent remission in 14 adults.

The 14 people were part of a cohort of 70 examined by Asier Saez-Cirion of the Pasteur Institute’s unit for regulation of retroviral infections. Examining the effect of early treatment, Sáez-Cirión treated the group with antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) between 35 days and 10 weeks after infection. This is much sooner than people are normally treated, reinforcing the idea that early treatment may be a vital part of an HIV cure.

According to NewScientist, all the participant’s drug regimens had been interrupted at some point, some willingly, some because of participation in other studies.

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The “Ew” factor : The status of HIV stigma

On March 21, 1994 (back when Stephen Spielberg rocked the mullet), a fresh-faced Tom Hanks double-timed it up the steps of the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in L.A. to accept his Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading role.

Pitted against Sir Anthony Hopkins for The Remains of the Day, Daniel Day- Lewis for In the Name of the Father, Lawrence Fishburne in What’s Love Got to Do with It, and Liam Neeson for Schindler’s List, Hanks won his golden statue for his role as a gay man dying of AIDS who combats stigma and discrimination in Philadelphia.

Voice choked with emotion, Hanks ended his speech with a moving cry to action and tolerance:

“I know that my work, in this case, is magnified by the fact that the streets of heaven are too crowded with angels. We know their names. They number a thousand for each one of the red ribbons that we wear here tonight. They finally rest in the warm embrace of the gracious creator of us all – a healing embrace, that cools their fevers, that clears their skin and allows their eyes to see the simple, evident, common-sense truth that is made manifest by the benevolent creator of us all and was written down on paper by wise men, tolerant men in the city of Philadelphia 200 years ago.”

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First In-Home HIV Test To Hit Retail Stores In the US

Recently the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the very first over the counter HIV test kit that allows individuals to test themselves in the comfort of their own homes.1 Would that not make you more inclined to take the test?  This is important because people will no longer have to make the effort to schedule a doctor’s appointment and be able to take the test in the comfort of their own home.

The OraQuick In-Home HIV Test is the first rapid diagnostics test for any infectious disease and works by detecting the antibodies that are part of the human HIV virus1.  You must simply take an oral swab and place it in the vial that is provided in the kit.  Within 20 to 40 minutes, you will have your results1.  If your results happen to be positive it doesn’t mean that you are definitely infected with the HIV.  Clinical studies have shown that “the kit is expected to show one false positive out of every 50,000 results and one false negative out of every 12 results.”  The over the counter test was not meant to replace medical testing but simply to provide another way for people to find out their HIV statuses virus. If you do test positive using this in-home test, it is recommended that you see your doctor to verify the results.1

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