News / Africa

Report: HIV Prevention Research Enters New Era

Multimedia

Audio
Joe DeCapua

A new report warns that promising developments in HIV prevention could be undermined by funding gaps and a lack of political will.  The report’s being released in conjunction with the 18th International AIDS Conference in Vienna.

Mitchell Warren, head of the AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition, says the new report is called "Turning the Page."

“Turning the Page for us refers to the HIV prevention research world really entering a new period in its activity,” he says.

That new period comes 30 years into the HIV/AIDS epidemic.

Good news, bad news

“We’re at a point now where some really important recent discoveries have not answered all our questions, but have certainly helped take us into some new directions and really open up a new chapter in the search for additional options to prevent HIV,” says Warren.

AVAC report released at 18 International AIDS Conference
AVAC report released at 18 International AIDS Conference

Those recent discoveries include anti-bodies found in some HIV positive people that prevent the AIDS virus from entering cells.  Then there’s last September’s results of the Thai vaccine trial, which proved a vaccine can offer some protection from infection.

But Warren says the good news comes at a time when researchers are facing a big obstacle – limited funding.

“Well, isn’t that just the way science is?  Just as we’re getting some of the most exciting results, just as we’re getting new concepts to test, we’re reaching a point in the global environment where the economy just can’t support everything…. Clearly, this is all happening in the context of severe economic crisis,” he says.

It’s time to be “smarter,” he says, about research as funding levels off or decreases.

“We’re seeing a lot of competition for resources, which is inevitable in periods of scarcity.  People saying we can’t afford to have disease specific programs.  We need public health.  We need good health systems.  Other people saying the treatment programs that have been scaled-up over the last number of years have been the best investments in building health systems, while also dealing with the AIDS epidemic,” says Warren

A microbicide that works against HIV?

One of the major announcements expected at the 18th International AIDS conference is about a microbicide gel called CAPRISA 004.

“It’s a fascinating program.  CAPRISA is the center of AIDS program of research in South Africa at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.  And KwaZulu-Natal is one of the provinces of South Africa and it’s the one with the highest rates of HIV. And it’s been really the epicenter of the epidemic there,” he says

The research is funded by the South African government and USAID. Clinical trial results for CAPRISA 004, which contains HIV fighting drugs, will be released on July 20.

“Whether that result is positive or if is a flat result or something in between – something that we’re not quite sure what it is – it is the first ever anti-retroviral containing product.  So it really does open up a new world of learning,” he says.

Warren says when it comes to HIV/AIDS, people must be ready to be surprised.  He adds, “The greatest advances…have come about because people and institutions refused to accept conventional wisdom about what was possible.”

You May Like

Photogallery Pistorius Sentenced, Taken to Prison

Pistorius, convicted of culpable homicide in shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, will likely serve about 10 months of five-year sentence, before completing it under house arrest More

UN to Aid Central Africa in Polio Vaccinations

Synchronized vaccinations will be conducted after Cameroon reports a fifth case of the wild polio virus in its territory More

WHO: Ebola Vaccine May Be in Use by Jan.

WHO assistant director Dr. Marie Paule Kieny says clinical trials of Ebola vaccines are underway or planned in Europe, US and Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid