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Global Health Project targets reducing AIDS among India's adolescents
Date:9/12/2007

Tampa, FL (Sept. 12, 2007) -- The University of South Floridas global health initiative to help India build an infrastructure to fight AIDS has been strengthened with a $1.36-million research training grant from the National Institutes of Health.

USF Health received the five-year grant Sept. 11 from the NIHs Fogarty International Center to create an interdisciplinary training program focused on the biomedical, behavioral, cultural and ethical aspects of detecting, treating and preventing HIV/AIDS among adolescents in India. USF will partner with Vadodara Medical College in Gujarat, India, to teach Indian physicians, scientists, nurses, and other health professionals how to conduct and evaluate community-based HIV clinical studies for this vulnerable population.

This program represents another exciting opportunity for USF to shine in the international health arena and to broaden the scope of our HIV research and training partnerships in India, said USF pediatrician Dr. Patricia Emmanuel, principal investigator for the project. It will enhance new knowledge in the area of adolescent health and benefit USF and the local communities in India.

India ranks second worldwide, following South Africa, in the number of HIV and AIDS cases. In some places in India, half of all new HIV infections occur in adolescents and young adults. Young people are at greater risk for HIV for several reasons, including girls increased biological susceptibility and a tendency for risky behaviors like unprotected sex and IV drug use, Emmanuel said.

India has made some significant inroads in committing resources to the pressing public health problem of AIDS. But, a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine reports that to curb the spread of the HIV epidemic, the developing nation must meet several challenges, including increasing the number of patients treated, improving the monitoring of therapy, caring for patients with tuberculosis coinfec
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Contact: Anne DeLotto Baier
abaier@health.usf.edu
813-974-3300
University of South Florida Health
Source:Eurekalert

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