A recent Justice Department report has cited extensive discriminatory and stigmatizing policies by the Nevada Department of Corrections. The NDC institutes a policy that houses inmates living with HIV apart from the general population, based on unfounded and scientifically disproven fears that HIV can be casually contracted.
Could something as simple as oral care affect viral reservoirs?
Research performed at Case Western found increased levels of HIV in the saliva and blood of people who had severe periodontitis (inflammation of the gums around the teeth). They discovered byproducts of bacteria, called metabolic small chain fatty acid (SCFA), that are associated with periodontitis, which can work together to awaken dormant HIV and cause it to reactivate, leading to an increase in residual HIV.
The HIV vaccine field is just now beginning to recover from the disappointments of prior large-scale vaccine studies and is beginning to show momentum, but where is that momentum headed? While much has been learned from those prior studies and vaccinology in general, one could well argue that HIV vaccine efforts are not as robust as they could be, likewise they do not take into consideration the overall picture of the requirements for an HIV vaccine. In particular, AIDS is a pandemic requiring cost-effective treatment. Even a partially active vaccine would have great benefit if they were cost-effective, easy to use and safe.
Brush more, floss more, use automated toothbrushes, a water pik, or place sulcular antibiotics?
What regimens are you currently recommending in your office for your patients’ oral hygiene maintenance and prevention? What if I told you that mechanical removal of bad bacteria might not be enough to ensure optimal oral health in all of your patients? After all, if simple removal of bacteria was beneficial then mouth washes would rein supreme chemical adjunct to mechanical removal. The problem is that this chemical warfare kills all types of oral bacteria, including the good!
Another year of the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI 2016) has come to pass. Here are a few less publicized but important highlights on HIV remission and eradication from this year’s conference.
A Second Berlin Patient?
Several attempts have been made in HIV-positive cancer patients to reproduce the possible eradication of HIV seen in Timothy Ray Brown. There have been past reports of procedures that appeared promising, but eventually viral rebound occurred or the patient succumbed to cancer.