Navigation Links
Food insecurity linked to HIV-treated drug users' deaths

Food insecurity increases the risk of death among injection drug users living with HIV/AIDS even when they are receiving life-prolonging antiretroviral therapy (ART), according to a new study involving Simon Fraser University.

The study, recently published in the peer-reviewed science journal, PLoS One, examines the impact of food insecurity and hunger on survival among injection drug users. Food insecurity is defined by the United Nations' World Food Programme as having insufficient access to adequate quantity and quality of food. Researchers found that drug users who were food insecure when first initiating ART were twice as likely to die compared to individuals who were food secure.

"This is the first study to look at the impact of food insecurity on the survival of HIV-positive injection drug users," says senior author Robert Hogg, an SFU health sciences professor and director of the HIV/AIDS Drug Treatment Program at the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS (BC-CfE).

Hogg is responsible for the B.C. portion of a national HIV food security study, which this paper advances.

"The introduction of life-saving antiretroviral therapy has significantly reduced HIV-related morbidity and mortality, however, the impact of insufficient access to food, particularly quality food, on the mortality of HIV-positive injection drug users is alarming. This research points to the urgent need to further investigate the impact of food insecurity on the health outcomes of people living with HIV/AIDS."

Researchers followed 254 injection drug users across B.C., finding that 71 per cent of them reported being food insecure at the time of ART initiation. After 13 years of follow-up, drug users who were food insecure were twice as likely to die compared to individuals who were food secure. Sub-analyses found hunger, or food insufficiency, was not the primary cause of mortality in this population.

"Findings regarding the relationship between food insecurity and mortality are particularly relevant to community organizations working in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside, the epicentre of drug use in Canada," says Brian Chittock. He is a co-principal investigator on the national HIV food security study and executive director of AIDS Vancouver.

"The findings speak to the need to explore options for improving the quality of foods available to residents. Further, the results suggest drug users would benefit from improved access to education and counseling around healthy eating, nutritional screening and referral for appropriate clinical care."

"Our work has international implications as it highlights the importance of food security for the sustained survival of HIV-positive people not just here in B.C., but in other parts of the world," says Aranka Anema. She is the first author on this study and a BC-CfE epidemiologist.

"We are collaborating with the United Nations World Food Program and other international agencies to identify evidence-based practices and policies for the prevention and management of food insecurity among people living with HIV/AIDS."


Contact: Carol Thorbes
Simon Fraser University

Related biology news :

1. Exposure to antibiotics linked to severity of allergic asthma: UBC research
2. Autism risk gene linked to differences in brain structure
3. Spontaneous gene glitches linked to autism risk with older dads
4. Dental X-rays linked to common brain tumor
5. Ocean acidification linked to larval oyster failure
6. First mass extinction linked to marine anoxia
7. Prenatal exposure to air pollution linked to childhood obesity
8. Knee injuries in women linked to motion, nervous system differences
9. Researchers discover first gene linked to missing spleen in newborns
10. Air pollution level changes in Beijing linked with biomarkers of cardiovascular disease
11. University of Leicester study finds low agreeableness linked to a preference for aggressive dogs
Post Your Comments:
(Date:6/22/2016)...  The American College of Medical Genetics and Genomics was ... as one of the fastest-growing trade shows during the Fastest ... in Las Vegas . ... in each of the following categories: net square feet of ... attendees. The 2015 ACMG Annual Meeting was ranked 23 out ...
(Date:6/16/2016)... , June 16, 2016 ... size is expected to reach USD 1.83 billion ... Grand View Research, Inc. Technological proliferation and increasing ... applications are expected to drive the market growth. ... , The development of advanced multimodal ...
(Date:6/3/2016)... Das DOTM (Department ... hat ein 44 Millionen $-Projekt ... einschließlich Personalisierung, Registrierung und IT-Infrastruktur, an Decatur ... Implementierung von Identitätsmanagementlösungen. Zahlreiche renommierte internationale Anbieter ... aber Decatur wurde als konformste und innovativste ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... bring innovative medical technologies, services and solutions to the healthcare market. The company's ... of various distribution, manufacturing, sales and marketing strategies that are necessary to help ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016  Liquid Biotech USA ... of a Sponsored Research Agreement with The University ... (CTCs) from cancer patients.  The funding will be ... correlate with clinical outcomes in cancer patients undergoing ... then be employed to support the design of ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... June 24, 2016  Regular discussions on a range of ... between the two entities said Poloz. Speaking at ... Ottawa , he pointed to the country,s inflation target, ... government. "In certain ... institutions have common economic goals, why not sit down and ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... June 24, 2016 , ... While the majority of ... the Cary 5000 and the 6000i models are higher end machines that use the ... of the spectrophotometer’s light beam from the bottom of the cuvette holder. , ...
Breaking Biology Technology: