Navigation Links
Access to antiretrovirals unlikely to reduce HIV infection rates

A new study by Rebecca Baggaley, Neil Ferguson, and Geoff Garnett (of Imperial College London) suggests that the HIV epidemic in poor countries will not be controlled through antiretroviral drugs alone, even if universal access is achieved. As they demonstrate in an article in the open-access international medical journal PLoS Medicine, without additional prevention methods such as counseling patients and their communities about safe sex, access to drugs is likely to increase HIV/AIDS prevalence.

Sexual transmission of HIV is more likely if the HIV-positive partner has a higher viral load. Because antiretrovirals therapy (ART) slows AIDS progression and reduces viral load in infected individuals, the drugs not only improve the health and prolong the life of those who take them, but also make it less likely that they infect others. As a consequence, ART has been discussed not only as a treatment but also as a prevention tool in its own right.

To test this, Baggaley and colleagues used a model to predict and compare the impacts of alternative strategies of increasing ART access in resource-poor countries. Some of the strategies included the provision of diagnostic laboratories that could routinely measure CD4 counts and viral loads of HIV-infected individuals (only if this is done could people be treated before they develop overt symptoms). They also took into account different ways that people might change their sexual behavior if they get treatment (which might make them feel physically better and more likely to be sexually active) and counseling (which will hopefully increase safe sex practices).

They found that providing ART to all individuals with AIDS symptoms (i.e. those at the late stages of the disease) was likely to increase the prevalence of HIV infection, as these people live longer and become sexually active again. If ART is also provided to HIV-positive individuals at an earlier stage, i.e. when their immune system starts to get weaker but before they develop the symptoms of AIDS, the outcome on HIV prevalence depends critically on the behavior of these individuals.

These results suggest that provision of ART to symptomatic AIDS patients and/or those at the earlier stages of the disease is not likely to prevent many new infections. It could even increase transmission of the virus as patients live longer and are healthier. Counseling patients and the rest of society to promote safe sex practices must therefore be an essential part of any strategy if it is to contain and reverse the AIDS epidemic. The model presented here can support health policy makers in resource-poor settings in their difficult task of allocating limited amounts of antiretroviral drugs for the best outcome for their populations.


'"/>

Source:Public Library of Science


Related biology news :

1. Open Access journals get impressive impact factors
2. Access to existing medical treatments could save more lives than spending to improve the treatments
3. Medical experts: US unlikely to have enough vaccines to stop avian flu
4. Ozone recovering, but unlikely to stabilize at pre-1980 levels, says study
5. Male circumcision reduces risk of HIV transmission from women to men
6. Deficiency of growth hormone and IGF-1 reduces cancer and kidney disease, but creates other problems
7. Use of PET can reduce, may eliminate more strenuous drug development trials with animals
8. Solutions that reduce death of marine life reeled in by International Smart Gear Competition
9. Physiological effects of reduced gravity on bacteria
10. New strategies to reduce hospital-aquired infections
11. New miniaturised chip dramatically reduces time taken for DNA analysis
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:5/20/2016)...  VoiceIt is excited to announce its new ... By working together, VoiceIt and VoicePass will offer ... take slightly different approaches to voice biometrics, collaboration ... usability. Both ... "This marketing and technology partnership allows ...
(Date:5/3/2016)...  Neurotechnology, a provider of high-precision biometric identification ... Identification System (ABIS) , a complete system for ... can process multiple complex biometric transactions with high ... face or iris biometrics. It leverages the core ... MegaMatcher Accelerator , which have been used in ...
(Date:4/26/2016)... , April 27, 2016 ... "Global Multi-modal Biometrics Market 2016-2020"  report to their ... , The analysts forecast the global ... of 15.49% during the period 2016-2020.  ... of sectors such as the healthcare, BFSI, transportation, ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)...  Liquid Biotech USA , ... Sponsored Research Agreement with The University of Pennsylvania ... cancer patients.  The funding will be used to ... clinical outcomes in cancer patients undergoing a variety ... employed to support the design of a therapeutic, ...
(Date:6/24/2016)... , June 24, 2016 Epic ... sensitively detects cancers susceptible to PARP inhibitors by ... tumor cells (CTCs). The new test has already ... therapeutics in multiple cancer types. Over ... DNA damage response pathways, including PARP, ATM, ATR, ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... WA (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... announces the release of its second eBook, “Clinical Trials Patient Recruitment and Retention ... recruitment and retention in this eBook by providing practical tips, tools, and strategies ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" ... commercialization of a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors ... such as WDR5 represent an exciting class of ... precision medicine for cancer patients. Substantial advances have ...
Breaking Biology Technology: