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HIV Infection Blog

Related terms: Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS), Acute HIV Infection, Acute Retroviral Syndrome, AIDS, AIDS-Related Complex, Chronic Symptomatic HIV Infection, HIV Infection, Acute, HIV Seroconversion Syndrome, Human Immunodeficiency Virus Infection, Primary HIV Infection, HIV, ARC, Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome, HIV/AIDS

FDA Approves Tybost (cobicistat) for use in the treatment of HIV-1 Infection

Posted 2 days 18 hours ago by

September 24, 2014 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Tybost (cobicistat), a CYP3A inhibitor used in combination with atazanavir or darunavir for the treatment of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection. Cobicistat is a pharmacokinetic enhancer that works by inhibiting the enzyme (CYP3A) that metabolizes atazanavir and darunavir. It increases the systemic exposure of these drugs and prolongs their effect. Cobicistat is also one of the ingredients in the combination HIV drug Stribild, which was approved by the FDA in August, 2012. Tybost comes in 150 mg tablets and is administered once daily in combination with the protease inhibitors atazanavir (Reyataz), or darunavir (Prezista). Because Tybost inhibits CYP3A, other medications metabolized by CYP3A may result in increased plasma concentrations and potentially severe side effects, which may be ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

FDA Approves Vitekta (elvitegravir) for HIV-1 Infection

Posted 2 days 18 hours ago by

September 24, 2014 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Vitekta (elvitegravir), an integrase strand transfer inhibitor for the combination treatment of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) infection in treatment-experienced adults. Elvitegravir is an HIV integrase strand transfer inhibitor that works by interfering with one of the enzymes that HIV needs to multiply. It is indicated in combination with an HIV protease inhibitor coadministered with ritonavir and with other antiretroviral drugs. It is one of the ingredients in the combination HIV drug Stribild, which was approved by the FDA in August, 2012. Vitekta (elvitegravir) comes in 85 mg and 150 mg tablets. It is administered once daily with food. The approval of Vitekta is based on the analyses through 96 weeks from one randomized, double-blind, active-controlled trial, Study 145, in ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

Half of HIV-Positive Gay Men in U.S. Aren't Getting Proper Treatment

Posted 6 days ago by

THURSDAY, Sept. 25, 2014 – Even though gay and bisexual men make up the majority of Americans infected with HIV, half aren't receiving ongoing care or getting the virus-suppressing drugs they need to stay healthy, a new report finds. The study, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), looked at 2010 data on more than 400,000 male gay and bisexual Americans who were infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. The research shows that while 77.5 percent did initially get HIV medical care within three months of their diagnosis, only about 51 percent continued getting care on an ongoing basis. Experts note that HIV infection can be manageable if powerful antiviral drugs are taken on a regular basis. But the CDC report finds that less than half of HIV-positive gay or bisexual men were prescribed such drugs, and only 42 percent achieved healthy "viral suppression." ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

California Trees Harbor Fungus Deadly to People With HIV

Posted 28 Aug 2014 by

THURSDAY, Aug. 28, 2014 – A potentially deadly fungus that has been sickening HIV/AIDS patients in Southern California for decades grows on trees, a new study finds. The team of scientists who published the research note that they were tipped off to the finding by a teen girl's science fair project. The Cryptococcus gattii fungus triggers infections of the lungs and brains and is responsible for a full third of all AIDS-related deaths, the researchers noted. They found that three tree species – Canary Island pine, Pohutukawa and American sweetgum – harbor the fungus and are sources of human infection. "Just as people who travel to South America are told to be careful about drinking the water, people who visit other areas like California, the Pacific Northwest and Oregon need to be aware that they are at risk for developing a fungal infection, especially if their immune system is ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection, Fungal Infections

FDA Approves Triumeq (abacavir, dolutegravir and lamivudine) for the treatment of HIV-1 Infection

Posted 25 Aug 2014 by

August 22, 2014 – ViiV Healthcare announced today that the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Triumeq (abacavir 600mg, dolutegravir 50mg and lamivudine 300mg) tablets for the treatment of HIV-1 infection.1 Triumeq is ViiV Healthcare’s first dolutegravir-based fixed-dose combination, offering many people living with HIV the option of a single-pill regimen that combines the integrase strand transfer inhibitor (INSTI) dolutegravir, with the nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NRTIs) abacavir and lamivudine. Triumeq alone is not recommended for use in patients with current or past history of resistance to any components of Triumeq. Triumeq alone is not recommended in patients with resistance-associated integrase substitutions or clinically suspected INSTI resistance because the dose of dolutegravir in Triumeq is insufficient in these populations. Before i ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection, Lamivudine, Abacavir, Dolutegravir

People With HIV May Be at Lower Risk for Multiple Sclerosis

Posted 4 Aug 2014 by

MONDAY, Aug. 4, 2014 – People with HIV seem to have a much lower risk of developing multiple sclerosis (MS) than those who don't have the virus, a new study finds. This lower risk may be due to constant suppression of the immune system due to the HIV infection itself and/or the antiretroviral drugs used to treat the infection, according to the researchers. They said their findings could prove important in finding new ways to treat MS, a degenerative nervous system disease. The hospital study observed more than 21,000 HIV patients and nearly 5.3 million people in England who were followed for seven years. During that time, just seven people were diagnosed with MS instead of the expected 18 people. That means people with HIV seemed to be about 60 percent less likely to develop MS compared to those who didn't have HIV. The longer a person had HIV, the less likely they were to develop MS. ... Read more

Related support groups: Multiple Sclerosis, HIV Infection

Bacteria in Semen May Affect HIV Transmission, Levels: Study

Posted 25 Jul 2014 by

THURSDAY, July 24, 2014 – Human semen is naturally colonized by bacteria, and a new study suggests the microbes might have a role to play in both HIV transmission and levels in infected men. U.S. researchers found that bacteria in semen – the "microbiome" – play a role in local inflammation and in the production of HIV by infected men. They say the findings point to possible targets for reducing transmission of the AIDS-causing virus. The study couldn't prove that the bacteria was causing changes in HIV levels, and the researchers say more research is needed. However, the findings do "suggest an interaction between semen microbiome, local immunology and semen viral load," wrote a team led by Lance Price of the Translational Genomics Research Institute in Phoenix. Although HIV is found in many bodily fluids, the virus is most commonly spread through semen. In addition to sperm, semen ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

HIV Meds May Also Help Control Hepatitis C, Study Finds

Posted 23 Jul 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2014 – For patients infected with both HIV and hepatitis C, HIV antiretroviral therapy may help control both viruses, a small study suggests. Researchers said doctors could use their findings to improve treatment strategies for people with the two diseases. "The findings suggest that HIV suppression with antiretroviral medications plays an important role in the management of individuals with [hepatitis C] and HIV infection," said study leader Dr. Kenneth Sherman, a professor of medicine at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. "It supports the concept that in those with HCV/HIV infection, early and uninterrupted HIV therapy is a critical part of preventing liver disease." The researchers conducted the study to address concerns that treating patients who have HIV – the AIDS-causing virus – and hepatitis C with HIV antiretroviral therapy would damage the ... Read more

Related support groups: Hepatitis C, HIV Infection

Scientists Snipped HIV Out of Human DNA

Posted 21 Jul 2014 by

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 – A recently developed molecular tool allowed researchers to remove HIV from cultured human cells in the lab. The team of scientists at Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia said their approach may one day lead to a permanent treatment for HIV. They added that this technique might also be used to develop a vaccine to offer protection against the disease in the future. "Since HIV-1 is never cleared by the immune system, removal of the virus is required in order to cure the disease," Kamel Khalili, chair of the department of neuroscience at Temple, explained in a university news release. "It's an exciting discovery, but it's not yet ready to go into the clinic. It's a proof of concept that we're moving in the right direction," added Khalili, who is also director of the Comprehensive NeuroAIDS Center at Temple. The study was published online July 21 in ... Read more

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Animal Experiments Shed Light on HIV's Ability to Hide

Posted 21 Jul 2014 by

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 – The "viral reservoir" in which HIV can lie dormant for years, avoiding detection and elimination, is established much earlier than previously thought, new animal research indicates. This discovery poses new obstacles for those working to eradicate the AIDS-causing virus, said Harvard researchers working with the U.S. Military HIV Research Program. They said the presence of the viral reservoir remains the most significant challenge to finding a cure for a subtype of HIV, known as HIV-1. "We found that the reservoir was established in tissues during the first few days of infection, before the virus was even detected in the blood," said the study's senior author, Dr. Dan Barouch, director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. For the study, published online July 20 in Nature, rhesus monkeys were infected ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

HIV Diagnoses Down in U.S., Except for Young Gay Males: CDC

Posted 21 Jul 2014 by

SATURDAY, July 19, 2014 – A new report offers good and bad news about the AIDS epidemic in the United States: The annual diagnosis rate of HIV, the virus that causes the disease, has dropped by one-third in the general population but has climbed among young gay and bisexual males. Significantly fewer heterosexuals, drug users and women were diagnosed each year with HIV, according to the report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. However, the annual diagnosis rate more than doubled for young gay and bisexual males. The push for safer sex may be falling on deaf ears in a generation too young to have seen the ravages of AIDS, said report co-author Amy Lansky, deputy director for surveillance, epidemiology and laboratory sciences at the CDC's Division of HIV/AIDS Prevention. "It's been more than 30 years since the first cases were reported," she said. "It's harder to ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

Those With HIV Living Longer, International Study Finds

Posted 18 Jul 2014 by

THURSDAY, July 17, 2014 – Overall death rates for HIV-positive adults living in Australia, Europe and the United States have been cut 28 percent since 1999, according to new international research. Deaths from AIDS-related causes dropped more than one-third among the HIV-positive adults in the study. Cardiovascular disease deaths declined by almost two-thirds, while deaths from liver disease were nearly halved, the study authors found. "It is reassuring that death rates continue to decrease amongst HIV-positive people," said lead researcher Colette Smith, a lecturer in biostatistics at the University College London in England. Not all the news was positive, however. Rates of cancer deaths remained stable, the researchers noted. Antiretroviral drugs are credited with making HIV into what some now call a chronic disease rather than a death sentence. This is particularly true in developed ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

AIDS Epidemic May Be Subsiding: Report

Posted 16 Jul 2014 by

WEDNESDAY, July 16, 2014 – A new United Nations report suggests that the AIDS epidemic might be waning: The number of new HIV infections worldwide is at a record low, AIDS-related deaths are down 35 percent, and more people with HIV are getting the lifesaving medications they need. International health officials even set a tentative date for the planned demise of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. "If we accelerate all HIV scale-up [increased efforts to fight the virus] by 2020, we will be on track to end the epidemic by 2030," Michel Sidibe, executive director of UNAIDS, said in an agency news release. "If not, we risk significantly increasing the time it would take – adding a decade, if not more." At the end of 2013, an estimated 35 million people worldwide were living with HIV, according to the UNAIDS report, which was released Wednesday. However, the trend in recent years is ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

Mississippi Girl Thought Cured of HIV Shows Signs of Infection

Posted 10 Jul 2014 by

THURSDAY, July 10, 2014 – A Mississippi girl born with HIV who was thought to be cured by immediate and aggressive drug treatment has relapsed, with new tests showing detectable levels of the AIDS-causing virus in her bloodstream, disappointed federal officials announced Thursday afternoon. The girl, now nearly 4 years old, had remained virus-free even though she stopped taking HIV medications when she was 18 months old. Doctors had hoped her remission would open the door to a functional cure for all children born with the virus. But a blood test taken during a routine clinical care visit earlier this month uncovered detectable HIV levels in her blood. Additional testing found that the girl also had a decreased white blood cell count and the presence of HIV antibodies, both of which are signs that an actively replicating pool of HIV has established itself in her body. "Certainly, this ... Read more

Related support groups: HIV Infection

HIV Patients Less Likely to Get Cancer Treatment: Study

Posted 1 Jul 2014 by

TUESDAY, July 1, 2014 – While medications are helping HIV-positive people avoid developing full-blown AIDS indefinitely, a new study finds that cancer patients with HIV are up to four times less likely to be treated for their tumors. The research comes with caveats. It looked at just three states from 1996, when powerful HIV drugs first began changing the face of the disease, to 2010, when patients routinely took the medications. And the study doesn't explain why HIV-positive people with cancer receive less treatment or how this affected their lifespans. Still, "the main message is that these patients are not receiving appropriate cancer therapy," said study author Dr. Gita Suneja, an assistant professor of radiation oncology with the University of Utah. "There's a lack of awareness about the issue as a whole because any one physician will see few of these patients. It's something that ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, HIV Infection

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