HIV prevention efforts are failing.
Last year, the discovery of a New York man with a novel form of drug-resistant HIV that rapidly progressed to AIDS caused some to warn of the emergence of a "superbug
." The first clinical analysis of the case will be published
Saturday in The Lancet (NYT preview
); Dr. Martin Markowitz concluded the cause of the rapid progression to AIDS may be incomplete -- but that efforts to prevent the epidemic must be redoubled, especially in light of the growing use of methamphetamines
. Dr. Carlos del Rio is blunt
: "This is telling us that AIDS prevention programs have been a failure." The Gay Men's Health Crisis agrees
posted by docgonzo
on Mar 17, 2005 -
If your European ancestors survived the Bubonic Plague
700 years ago, they very likely may have also passed on to you a mutation of the CCR5 gene -- called delta 32
. This may not sound exciting, but delta 32 is a powerful mistake. HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, attacks the human immune system, infecting the white blood cells sent to destroy it. The delta 32 mutation, however, effectively blocks the crucial gateway into human cells the virus needs. In fact, possessing delta 32 could save your life, and the lives of your children.
posted by lola
on Mar 8, 2005 -
National Black HIV/AIDS Awareness & Information Day February 7, 2005
Seventy-two African-Americans are infected with HIV every day African-Americans make up approximately 12 percent of the population of the United States, yet 38% percent of total AIDS cases reported in this country are among members of the Black community. In 2003, more African Americans were reported to have HIV/AIDS than any other racial/ethnic group.
posted by halekon
on Feb 7, 2005 -
The Church Awakens
"The AIDS pandemic is the greatest humanitarian crisis," Casey said. "It just begs a reaction from the church."
The church is now in full reaction mode. More than 2,000 Christian medical professionals, church leaders, and students gathered for the ninth annual Global Missions Health Conference, November 11-13, at Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky. They spoke not only of statistics that confirmed the extent of the pandemic (43 million people living with HIV/AIDS; 8,000 deaths each day; 14 million orphans), but of working together.
posted by halekon
on Dec 21, 2004 -
The HIV virus has jumped from primates to people
on at least seven separate occasions in recent history, not twice as is commonly thought. And people in Cameroon are showing up with symptoms of HIV, but are testing negative for both the virus and its primate equivalent SIV, the virus from which HIV is thought to have evolved. That suggests that new strains of an HIV-like virus are circulating in wild animals
and infecting people who eat them, sparking fears that such strains could fuel an already disastrous global HIV pandemic.
posted by dejah420
on Aug 6, 2004 -
July, 2004 Report on the Global AIDS Epidemic:
"The HIV epidemic is worse than ever." "As the AIDS pandemic enters its 24th year, the number of people living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection continues to increase steadily.
Two thirds of infected persons are in Africa, where the epidemic exploded during the 1990s, and one fifth are in Asia, where the epidemic has been growing rapidly in recent years." A new report
from the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS shows that ""in short, the epidemic is outstripping efforts to contain it."
"We're talking about more than 8,000 deaths every single day and in the war against AIDS we know the tools that work, we know the sorts of intervention that work, and if an administration is choosing other than these, and is doing less than it ought, then they're absolutely responsible."
As prevention fails and more people die, some are "still insisting that only brand-name AIDS drugs approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration,
most of them manufactured by big U.S. pharmaceutical companies, can be bought by beneficiaries of U.S. aid, despite the fact they are as much as five times more expensive as their generic equivalents manufactured in poor countries."
posted by fold_and_mutilate
on Jul 8, 2004 -
The CDC recently issued new HIV prevention guidelines
that would mandate all organizations that get any federal funding to submit all surveys, curricula, web materials, posters, ads, brochures, etc. to new community-based Policy Review Panels. Politically appointed censors rather than health officials will now decide what's acceptable in terms of HIV prevention and education. Materials must promote abstinence and include a message about the ineffectiveness of condom use in preventing the spread of HIV and STDs. There is a period of public comment on the new regulations until August 16. - more inside -
posted by madamjujujive
on Jul 1, 2004 -
The Copenhagen Consensus
is Bjørn Lomborg’s latest agenda-setting
enterprise. Eight top economists (of which three are Nobel laureates) were
asked to rank 32 of the world’s challenges
using cost-benefit analysis and estimation of importance. The resulting ranking
suggested that the HIV/AIDS epidemic be prioritized first.
As always with Mr. Lomborg (previously discussed here
), the whole enterprise was
surrounded by controversy, and triggered a counter conference, The
, and earned him the privilege of getting likened to
Hitler by a high-ranking UN official
posted by AwkwardPause
on Jun 3, 2004 -
Two HIV Cases Put a Scare Into P9rn (LATimes)
Several major adult movie companies — including the industry's largest, Vivid — have decided to stop filming for 60 days after two stars tested positive for HIV. But other companies dismissed the plea for a moratorium, calling it "paranoid" and "knee-jerk," and vowed to keep their cameras rolling. The industry, they said, was perfectly safe."I'm against any stop in production," said a producer "It will put a lot of people out of business. You'll have people who will start losing their apartments. It's just not fair."
When do adult movies (a hugely profitable business
where unprotected sex is often performed) end being sexy and start being "Russian Roulette on dvd" scary?
The two actors who have tested positive for the HIV virus are identified as Darren James and Lara Roxx. Roxx (who's 18 or 19) had only been in the adult industry for three months
. 45 actors and actresses who subsequently either worked with James or the women he had sex with after contracting the virus, which is believed to have occurred in Brazil (where, incidentally, star and director John Stagliano
-- not completely work-safe link -- says he caught AIDS in 1997), have been identified, too. warning: except the Stagliano link, all the others are work-safe. (more inside)
posted by matteo
on Apr 16, 2004 -
"Orphans and babies as young as three months old have been used as guinea pigs in potentially dangerous medical experiments sponsored by pharmaceutical companies, an Observer investigation has revealed.
"British drug giant GlaxoSmithKline is embroiled in the scandal. The firm sponsored experiments on the children from Incarnation Children's Centre, a New York care home that specialises in treating HIV sufferers and is run by Catholic charities." [link
posted by The God Complex
on Apr 3, 2004 -
African AIDS Drug Plan Faces Collapse.
The World Health Organization's Three by Five
programme seeks to supply 3 million Africans with anti-HIV drugs by 2005. But it's in danger, due to lack of cash... and opposition from special interests
who seem to be exerting influence over the U.S. government. According to Stephen Lewis
, U.N. Special Envoy for AIDS in Africa, 'If Three by Five fails, as it surely will without the dollars, then there are no excuses left, no rationalisations to hide behind. There will only be the mass graves of the betrayed.'
posted by stonerose
on Mar 17, 2004 -
The San Francisco Chronical has an observance
on the 10th anniversary of the death of Randy Shilts. His second book, And the Band Played On
opened my eyes to the AIDS epidemic, as I am sure it did to a lot of straight people. I was amazed to see him pilloried in the gay press as being a traitor to his "kind." My understanding is that this disfavor arose from his assertion that aspects of the hard-won sexual freedom enjoyed by many gay men were also killing them. Anyone want to weigh in on this?
posted by Danf
on Feb 17, 2004 -
Aids in Africa
- you know the facts right? Well perhaps not, what you know are the predictions of a Computer Model. Rian Malan in today's Spectator highlights how alarmingly inaccurate such models are proving. Paul Henman
illustrates how common it is to build political assumptions into a model and then hide them under layers of complexity and apparent objectivity. Think global warming
. How do we challenge the models that increasingly determine our opinions and priorities?
posted by grahamwell
on Dec 12, 2003 -
"They do not use Western means to tell time. They use the sun.
These drugs have to be administered in certain sequences, at certain times during the day. You say, take it at 10 o'clock, they say, what do you mean, 10 o'clock?" They, of course, refers to "Africans" and the above logic from the head of USAID
was used an explanation for why it's tough to extend AIDS treatment to Africa. The only problem with this argument is that it's wrong.
People with HIV in developing countries are in better compliance with drug regimes than in the US as new research is showing
[RealAudio]. As we've seen throughout the epidemic, it's a lot easier to get funding for researchers in lab coats than for actual treatment . . .
posted by donovan
on Dec 1, 2003 -
Heres an intresting entry from the Wikipedia
The link points to a short article on the AIDS "patient Zero" Gaëtan Dugas. hopefully this should serve as a good starting point for research or discussion. Although in the new millennium I wonder what sort of civil liberty issues this type of of research might have.
posted by hoopyfrood
on Dec 1, 2003 -
Public Lives: Freddie Mercury
, Arthur Ashe
, Rock Hudson
, Brad Davis
, Perry Ellis
, Eazy E
, Michel Foucault
, Amanada 'Miss Kitty' Blake
, Roy Cohn
, Keith Haring
, Robert Mapplethorpe
, Rudolf Nureyev
, Anthony Perkins
, Willi Smith
, Ricky Wilson
Private lives: Gail Farrow
, T Billy
, Bob BJ Johnson
, Nkoosi Johnson
, Terry McCormick
, Catherine Margaret Cory
Public or private, we've all had losses. Is there anyone you are remembering today?
posted by madamjujujive
on Dec 1, 2003 -
In Uganda, 1.7 million children have been orphaned by Aids - a tenth of the world's total. Here is one woman's story
. If you do not have the time to read through the article, please consider a visit to www.sendacow.org.uk
, the charity mentioned in the article.
posted by davehat
on Dec 1, 2003 -
The value of disobedience. [note: nytimes]
"Ignoring the reactionary policies of the Vatican, some local priests and nuns quietly do what they can to save parishioners from AIDS." So: when and why do people choose to quietly disobey, rather than leave and promote change from outside their social institutions...or vice versa? Should dissenters just leave, or stay and fight? Anecdotes from Republicans and NRA members are especially welcome ;-)
posted by stonerose
on Nov 26, 2003 -
Vatican declares fresh Death all around.
It seems the Vatican is telling people in countries with high AIDS infection not to use condoms, because the virus is small enough to pass through the porous latex. The World Health Organization believes condoms do reduce the risk of AIDS transmission. To which the Vatican's Cardinal Trujillo replied: "They are wrong about that... this is an easily recognisable fact."
posted by the fire you left me
on Oct 9, 2003 -
Michael Johnston, a strong voice of the ex-gay movement, falls from grace
, admitting he willingly had unprotected sex with men without disclosing his HIV+ status, after appearing in national advertisements to promote the ex-gay movement
. One of his strongest supporters, the Concerned Women for America, are calling it a "severe moral failing"
and equating homosexuality to alcoholism (i.e., a disease).
posted by archimago
on Aug 8, 2003 -
First Documented Case
of HIV hybridization in a human being was presented at the International AIDS Society conference in Paris. In this case, genetic tests on a superinfected woman showed that the two strains she was infected with swapped genetic material, creating a new hybrid strain of HIV. The actual effects are not yet clear, but this could pose a serious problem for researchers trying to create a vaccine.
posted by Irontom
on Jul 16, 2003 -
It seems that merely "reacting" is always a step behind of a fast evolving hostile force, and some pre-emptive strategy is a must.
posted by semmi
on Mar 19, 2003 -
to fight AIDS in Africa comes with some strings attached, it turns out. Bush is limiting the funds
that clinics which perform abortions can receive. Is it moral to politicize an epidemic?
posted by hipnerd
on Feb 17, 2003 -
takes on the Rolling Stone "bug chasing"/HIV+ gay sex story in his column today, and lambastes one of his favorite sacred cows, Gay Men's Health Crisis
and other outreach groups that seem to have a lackadaisical attitude towards their clients' risky behavior. He's written
about this before
, in the case of Seth Watkins, an HIV+ sex education worker who admitted in the NYTimes he has unprotected casual sex at clubs. Does any of this coverage increase awareness of the still-plenty-big threat of HIV, or does it just make gay men look bad? Respectful discussion within...?
posted by serafinapekkala
on Jan 29, 2003 -
Bush appoints anti-gay member to AIDS panel.
Jerry Thacker runs the Scepter Institute, a Christian Ministry. Their website
states that "Both Jerry and his wife, Sue, [are] HIV-positive. How could it be? Jerry and Sue were committed Christians." The L.A. Times
notes that Thacker has described homosexuality as a "deathstyle," and describes significant revisions that have been made to the Scepter Institute's website.
I wonder if Thacker will be applying for some funds
to renovate Scepter's offices, now that he is providing such a valuable social service?
posted by stonerose
on Jan 23, 2003 -