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Researchers: T-cell ‘scissors’ treatment shows promise as HIV deterrent

A new gene therapy approach that engineers a person’s T cells so that they become resistant to the human immunodeficiency virus has shown early signs of success, researchers said Wednesday. Also called gene editing, the process acts like molecular scissors to snip off an entry portal for HIV so the…

‘Dirty’ Oklahoma dentist put 7,000 patients at risk of HIV and Hepatitis

A dirty dentist placed 7,000 patients at risk of contracting HIV and other infectious diseases after failing to properly sterilize equipment at his Oklahoma practice, health officials warned Thursday. Officials do not yet know if any patients were infected but urged everyone who had ever been treated at the Tulsa…

Children forced to wear ‘HIV-positive’ ribbons in Tanzania

At least seven schools in Tanzania have taken to forcing schoolchildren with HIV to wear a red ribbon on their clothing that announces their health status, according to BBC News.  Critics say that the decision stigmatizes children whose lives are often already complicated by the disease, whereas some school officials…

Joint action on HIV and TB saved 900,000 lives: WHO

LONDON (Reuters) – An estimated 910,000 lives were saved worldwide over six years thanks to better collaboration between health services to protect people with the AIDS virus from tuberculosis, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Friday. The WHO said there had been a sharp rise in the numbers of…

Vancouver finds novel way to reduce HIV: free crack pipes

Determined to halt the spread of diseases in their community, one Canadian neighborhood has adopted a controversial yet effective mitigation program: giving out free crack pipes. According to The Daily Mail, the Vancouver Coastal Health Harm Reduction organization has created a $60,000 “harm reduction program” aimed at at lowering HIV…

Australian man reportedly contracts HIV from tattoo in Bali

Indonesia is investigating the case of an Australian who is believed to have been infected with HIV while getting a tattoo on the resort island of Bali, an official said Monday. “We received a report about this case from the health ministryyesterday and officials will be visiting tattoo parlours today to verify this claim,” Bali…

Many Americans with HIV go untreated: study

Nearly three quarters of Americans with HIV do not have their infection under control, raising the risk of death from AIDS and transmission to others, said a US study on Tuesday. One in five people with human immunodeficiency virus are unaware that they have the disease, added the report by the Centers for…

HIV trial scrapped after gel found ineffective

In a major setback for AIDS prevention research, a clinical trial of a new vaginal gel supposed to reduce HIV infections has been suspended after studies showed it to be ineffective. Researchers from the Microbicide Trials Network, set up by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH), expressed surprise at…

Where to from here?: AIDS’ anniversary prompts speculation about the future

In June 1981, the first cases of a mysterious and lethal illness affecting gay men were reported in the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The illness was characterized by a rapidly failing immune system, and was subsequently termed Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS). In 1984,…

Is the focus on HIV treatment distracting from the search for a cure?

The introduction of combination anti-retroviral therapy (ART) in 1996 dramatically reduced the severity and high mortality rate associated with HIV infection and yielded the added benefit of reducing mother-to-child transmission during pregnancy. Each “class” of antiretroviral drugs in the cocktail targets a different step of the virus’s replication cycle. So,…

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