People with HIV Still at Risk for Opportunistic Illness Death Despite Dramatic Survival Gains

The risk of death due to opportunistic illnesses (OIs) has declined dramatically since the advent of combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) in the mid-90s, but even in the era of effective ART about a third of people diagnosed with a first OI died within 5 years, according to an analysis of more than 20,000 people living with HIV in San Francisco.


Drug Levels Are Key to Effectiveness of Tenofovir Vaginal Gel for HIV Prevention

Although the VOICE study failed to show an overall protective effect for tenofovir vaginal gel, further analysis suggests that women who had detectable blood drug levels were at lower risk of HIV infection, according to an analysis described in the June 29 advance edition of Journal of Infectious Diseases. Another recent analysis from the CAPRISA 004 trial showed that higher levels of tenofovir in the genital tract were associated with greater reduction in risk.


Coverage of the 2015 International AIDS Society Conference coverage of the International AIDS Society Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention (IAS 2015), July 19-22, in Vancouver, Canada.

Conference highlights include HIV treatment as prevention, pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), new antiretroviral therapies, HIV cure research, hepatitis C and HIV/HCV coinfection, and global scale-up of prevention and treatment.

Full listing by topic

IAS 2015 website



Studies Advance Understanding of Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies Against HIV

Three recent studies funded by the National Institutes of Health have shed further light on broadly neutralizing antibodies that may play a role in developing an effective HIV vaccine. The studies demonstrated techniques for stimulating immune cells to produce antibodies that either could stop HIV from infecting human cells in the laboratory, or had the potential to evolve into such antibodies, according to a National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases press release.


Injection Drug Use and Hepatitis C Coinfection Increase Risk of Death for People with HIV

HIV-positive people who inject drugs and those who are coinfected with hepatitis C virus (HCV) have elevated mortality rates, according to a report from the ART Cohort Collaboration published in the July 1 Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes. HIV/HCV coinfected drug injectors had a high risk of liver-related death, but those without HCV still had higher mortality due to various causes compared with non-injectors.


Heroin Use Increasing in U.S. Population, Linked to Overdose Deaths, CDC Says

Heroin use has increased among men and women across most age groups and all income levels in recent years, according to the July 7 Vital Signs report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The report urges a 3-prong response, including preventing people from starting heroin use, treating heroin addiction, and using naloxone (Narcan) to prevent overdose deaths.


HIV-specific Immune Responses Linked to Reduced Infection Risk in PrEP Study

People who remained HIV-negative in the iPrEx pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) trial were more likely to show evidence of HIV-specific T-cell responses, and certain responses were significantly associated with reduced risk of infection, according to research published in the June 22 advance edition of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. These findings suggest that natural immunity may be giving Truvada PrEP a boost in preventing HIV infection.