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HIV & PrEP News

New Vaccine Approaches Show Early Promise for HIV

Two experimental vaccine approaches, using mRNA protein delivery and germline targeting, are in the early stages of development. After more than three decades of research, scientists have had little success developing vaccines to prevent HIV. But advances in vaccine science—including those that led to the rapid development of COVID-19 vaccines—could offer hope for the future.

Breakthrough HIV Test means people living with HIV can begin treatment sooner.

The Aptima HIV-1 Quant Dx assay, already approved for viral load monitoring, has now received Food and Drug Administration approval for initial HIV diagnosis, making it the first product OK’d for both purposes. The Aptima HIV-1 was approved for viral load monitoring in 2016, and its manufacturer, Hologic, announced Friday that the FDA had approved it for HIV diagnosis. Read Full Article

Abnormal body fat distribution is still a concern for many people living with HIV.
Lipodystrophy is an umbrella term that refers to both fat loss and abnormal fat accumulation. Lipodystrophy can be emotionally distressing. It can be a constant reminder of living with HIV and can reveal to others that a person has the virus. In some cases, concern about fat gain or loss may cause people to delay HIV treatment or take it inconsistently. Read Full Article
People Who Start HIV Treatment Early Have a Normal Life Expectancy

But even starting antiretrovirals with a high CD4 count doesn’t close the wide gap in years lived without major health problems. The good news is that the gap in life expectancy between people with and without HIV has steadily narrowed in recent years, falling to nine years. Furthermore, those who initiate treatment when their CD4 count is at least 500 have a normal life expectancy. Read Full Article

When To Talk To Your Doctor About Changing HIV Treatments

There are a number of reasons why you may need to change your HIV treatment. You might experience side-effects which become unmanageable, have trouble taking your treatment, or the HIV drugs you take may not keep your viral load down. You might also need to change treatment because of interactions between HIV drugs and drugs for other conditions or because you experience drug resistance, which can develop when HIV treatment does not work properly. Read Full Article

Scientists Have Discovered the First New Strain of HIV in 19 Years
For the first time in nearly two decades, a team of scientists have discovered a new strain of HIV. However, experts say there is no cause for alarm. Read Full Article
Long-Acting Injectable PrEP Proves as Effective as Truvada
A major clinical trial found that injections of long-acting cabotegravir given every eight weeks resulted in nearly 70% fewer new cases of HIV than daily Truvada pills taken as a pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). Read Full Article
Adherence to HIV Meds in U.S. Is Poor

A recent analysis suggested that only one in four people on antiretroviral treatment take 95% or more of their doses. Only perhaps a quarter of people living with HIV in the United States are adherent to, or faithfully take, their daily antiretroviral (ARV) regimen. Read Full Article

Maintaining PrEP Adherence During a Pandemic
While the world was consumed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Giffin Daughtridge got some much-needed good news. The Harvard University-based start-up the doctor cofounded, UrSure Inc., was purchased in late May by HIV testing company OraSureTechnologies. Read Full Article
54 Health Organizations: White Supremacy Fuels Black, Latinx HIV Rates
Led by AIDS United, dozens of groups around the nation demand racial justice in an open letter to politicians.
How Do Injectable HIV Drugs Work?
This year, Canada became the first nation to approve a monthly injectable all-in-one HIV treatment, ViiV Healthcare’s Cabenuva (a combination of the drugs cabotegravir and rilpivirine). While approval in the U.S. hit a bump over scale-up readiness, other injectable HIV treatment are on their way. Read Full Article