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HIVR4P 2016: PrEP Knowledge and Use Increases in San Francisco, 12,500 People Now on PrEP

Knowledge about and use of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) has greatly increased over the past few years in San Francisco, and surveillance estimates suggest that some12,500 people are now on PrEP, according to a presentation at the HIV Research for Prevention conference (HIVR4P 2016) last week in Chicago.

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HIV Glasgow: New $90-$90-$90 Target Needed for Global Viral Hepatitis, HIV, and TB Treatment

The costs of making drugs to treat viral hepatitis, HIV, and tuberculosis (TB) are now so low that each disease could be treated for less than $90, Andrew Hill of St. Stephen’s AIDS Trust said at the opening plenary of the International Congress of Drug Therapy in HIV Infection this week in Glasgow.

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HIVR4P 2016: New Microbicide Enema Achieves High Levels of Drug in Rectal Tissues in Monkeys

Rectal microbicides that protect against HIV transmission via anal sex are a bigger technical challenge than vaginal ones. The rectal lining is more delicate than the vaginal lining, so safety has been an issue; research has shown that many of the gel formulations used in lubricants damage rectal cells and may actually enhance HIV transmission.

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HIVR4P 2016: Huge Diversity in HIV Vaccine Research Discussed at Prevention Conference

The HIV vaccine research field is currently going through probably its most fertile and diverse period yet. A high proportion of presentations at the second HIV Research for Prevention conference (HIVR4P 2016) in Chicago last week were devoted to a multiplicity of different approaches scientists are taking towards making an effective vaccine.

[Produced in collaboration with aidsmap.com]

At the opening plenary, Georgia Tomaras of Duke University gave an overview of the field. It has been a long journey towards developing vaccines with even partial efficacy: the first trial of any kind was in 1987 and the first large efficacy trial -- which failed -- was in 2003. But the RV144 vaccine -- which in 2009 showed limited efficacy, reducing HIV infections among recipients by 31% (and 60% a year after its first dose) -- injected new energy into the field, not least because its effect seemed due to an unexpected kind of anti-HIV response.

At the International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) held in Durban in July researchers reported that a pilot study, HVTN100, of an RV144-type vaccine adapted to the strain predominant in South Africa it produced a stronger response than the original RV144 vaccine. This meant it had passed the criteria for being advanced to a large efficacy trial, HVTN 702. This will start next month -- the first HIV vaccine efficacy trial for 7 years, since HVTN 505 started in July 2009.

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Coverage of HIV Research for Prevention Conference (HIVR4P 2016)

HIVandHepatitis.com coverage of the 2016 HIV Research for Prevention Conference (HIVR4P 2016), October 17-21, in Chicago.

Conference highlights include current and experimental pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), microbicide rings and other options, and investigational HIV vaccines.

Full listing of coverage by topic

HIVR4P 2016 website

10/22/16

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HIVR4P 2016: Rings, Films or Inserts? Prevention Products Need to Make Sense in Women's Lives

"We need to think outside of the box," Sharon Hillier of the Microbicide Trials Network told participants at the HIV Research for Prevention (HIVR4P 2016) conference this week in Chicago. Researchers should not be aiming to develop the most scientifically elegant solution for HIV prevention, but should "figure out how to make products that can really fit into people’s lives."

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HIVR4P 2016: Vaginal and Rectal Bacteria May Influence HIV Transmission and Microbicide Efficacy

A number of presentations at the HIV Research for Prevention Conference (HIVR4P 2016) this week in Chicago looked at the influence of vaginal bacteria on HIV susceptibility, with one study finding that vaginal bacteria may have profound effects on levels of certain drugs used as microbicides -- but not others. A poster at the conference also looked at bacteria in the rectum in gay men, finding a correlation between condomless anal sex and changes in the predominant bacterial species which may similarly increase susceptibility to HIV infection.

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