Category Archives: HIV

Taking stock of current HIV vaccine efforts

By Noreen Griffin
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.

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Oral Probiotics- it’s Time to Add Friendly Probiotics to the Mix

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!

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Can Statin Therapy Reduce Heart Disease Risk in HIV- Positive People?

Current_Research_and_Opinions_200An important study called REPRIEVE, aims to answer some important questions regarding heart disease risk for people living with HIV. The Randomized Trial to Prevent Vascular Events in HIV (REPRIEVE), or A5332, is a multi-centered, mainly US based, study is investigating the use of prophylactic statin therapy as a preventative method against cardiovascular disease (CVD) in HIV-positive people. REPRIEVE is one of the largest prospective interventional studies to be conducted among HIV patients, and the first major study to widely test a prevention strategy for cardiovascular disease in the HIV population. If successful, the prophylactic use of statins could provide an important means of significantly reducing the occurrence of heart disease in the HIV-positive population.

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4 CROI Briefs

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.

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Interferon & HIV

Luis J. Montaner DVM, D.Phil, of the Wistar Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania has been studying the effects of interferon on HIV DNA and its ability to reduce the size of HIV viral reservoirs for several years. The current understanding of HIV cure research is dedicated to the idea that viral reservoirs are the main barrier to eradicating HIV or producing HIV remission.

In February of 2014, The National Institutes of Health granted Montaner’s lab a four-year, $6.2 million grant to conduct a multi-site trial to investigate interferon. The study will be the largest clinical trial of a potential cure strategy to date, and continues earlier research of interferon that showed promising results.

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