The latest international news, analysis and features on the HIV epidemic from Avert. Share your views and expertise with your peers in the comments box below the articles.
Doctors at Georgetown University in the USA have reported the first diagnosed case of Alzheimer’s disease in a person living with HIV. It was previously thought that HIV-related inflammation in the brain may prevent amyloid deposition – one of the likely causes of Alzheimer’s disease.
For the first time ever, more people have died from tuberculosis (TB) than from HIV, making TB the biggest infectious disease killer globally.
This World Tuberculosis (TB) Day, UNAIDS have called for a greater integration of HIV and TB services in order to combat the dual epidemics. In 2013, over 9 million people were diagnosed with TB, of which 1.1 million were also living with HIV. PLHIV are around 30 times more likely to develop opportunistic infections such as TB, with TB being the leading cause of death for PLHIV – among this group, 360,000 deaths can be attributed to TB alone.
The large majority of cases of extensively drug-resistant tuberculosis (XDR-TB) in Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa, were acquired via person-to-person, and not as a result of treatment failure, as originally believed. These results were presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI) in Seattle this week, and demonstrate the need to focus attention on infection control and prevention in the region.
Tuberculosis (TB) remains one of the world’s deadliest communicable diseases states the latest Global Tuberculosis Report by the World Health Organization. In 2013, an estimated 9 million people were infected with TB with 1.5 million dying from the disease. Of which, 360 000 people were co-infected with TB and HIV.
Huge advances have been made in treating HIV leading to an increased life expectancy for people infected by HIV. Although, recent studies of older HIV positive generations highlight the additional challenges these populations face. A study presented at the 2014 International AIDS conference has found that people living with HIV (PLWHIV) have been found to be at greater risk of suffering from age-related diseases than HIV-negative infected individuals.
July 28th is World Hepatitis Day, which aims to raise awareness of viral hepatitis around the world. There are five main types of hepatitis virus, referred to as types A, B, C, D and E. Hepatitis C is considered to be causing a “dual epidemic” with HIV because it is highly prevalent in HIV-endemic areas. About five million people living with HIV, or 15% of the total, are co-infected with hepatitis C.
At the first day of the 20th International AIDS Conference a major breakthrough in treatment of tuberculosis (TB) has been announced. Experiments with a new cocktail of three drugs to treat patients infected with TB strains that are hard to cure with conventional antibiotics, can not only improve the treatment of TB and its multi-drug resistant strains, but also shorten the treatment period.