In the course of a few hours, Charlie Sheen's disclosure of his HIV status did for HIV awareness what no public health measure would ever have accomplished. This is now known as the so-called "Charlie Sheen effect," and despite his publicly wacky way of disclosing his illness, we welcome it.
Until recently, it looked like the African AIDS epidemic might finally be controlled, with the widespread use of anti-retroviral (ARV) drugs. But poor compliance has caused HIV to mutate in a way such that tenofovir, one of the most important ARV drugs, often no longer works, threatening not only Africa, but world as well.
While thalidomide was responsible for tens of thousands of deformed babies in Europe in the late 1950s and early 60s, decades later data is showing the drug to be efficacious against certain chronic conditions. It's especially beneficial against the blood cancer multiple myeloma.
Needle exchange programs where addicts can exchange dirty syringes for clean ones are effective in preventing the spread of HIV, a finding that's highlighted in a new CDC report. But in terms of curbing the overall drug abuse problem, the programs themselves remain controversial.
The World Health Organization is changing its tune on treatment for HIV, for the better. It now says that those diagnosed with HIV should be treated immediately. This may sound like a no-brainer, but treatment was formerly withheld and for good reason.
The FDA and CDC are expressing concerns about the potential for rising rates of transfusion-associated infections, with both agencies calling for more testing and precautions. Cash-strapped blood banks are not nearly so concerned.
TEASER: A perspective article in the NEJM re-explores in depth the ongoing epidemic of HIV in rural southeastern Scott County, IN. The authors (from San Diego, CA and Baltimore, MD) discuss the various factors responsible for the onset and spread of HIV and HCV as well.
When you think of various countries around the globe, it is unlikely that Botswana pops into your head. Yet, some very important news just came from this impoverished sub-Saharan country.
A recent study shows that early treatment for HIV results in a significant decrease in early illness and death. "It's just more scientific evidence to back what we've been saying for a time now," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, part of the National Institutes of Health which funded the
In March, we wrote about Indiana Governor Pence and his decision to finally allow for a clean needle exchange to stem the outbreak of IV-drug-induced HIV in Scott County, IN. Federal law currently
In what is being hailed by some as a historic decision, the FDA has decided to change its recommendations for blood donations from gay and bisexual men. In 1983, during the height of the AIDS crisis, the FDA
For all those in science, educating people is a major part of the job. Whether its a professor teaching students in a classroom, a physician teaching a patient about a procedure, or a non-profit, like ACSH teaching consumers the difference between good and junk science, the work of those in the sciences should always be characterized by teaching in some form. When this system breaks down and the