CFAR Receives $1.2 Million for HIV Research Projects in the US

As part of the Ending the HIV Epidemic (EHE): A Plan for America initiative, the University of Washington/Fred Hutch Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) received $1.2 million to fund five research projects. This initiative allocates funding to HIV research with the goal of reducing new infections in the United States by 90 percent by 2030.

New Test is First in U.S. to Help Detect New STD Threat

It is hard to get much of a reputation if nobody knows you’re around, and that has definitely been the case for mycoplasma genitalium, the tiny bacteria estimated to be more prevalent than the bug that causes gonorrhea but is almost completely off the public’s radar.

That’s because, until very recently, it has been difficult for front-line physicians to confirm that this particular microbe — the smallest bacteria ever detected — was present in specific patients.

Global Health Professor Explores Linkages Between Maternal HIV Infection, Breast Milk, and Infant Health

The National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) and US Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) have awarded a grant to Christine McGrath, Associate Professor of Global Health, and Grace Aldrovandi, Professor of Pediatrics at UCLA, to evaluate the association between maternal HIV infection, breast milk, and the infant gut microbiome.
 

PrEP Use High but Wanes after Three Months Among Young African Women

In a study of open-label Truvada as daily pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to prevent HIV among 427 young African women and adolescent girls, 95% initiated the HIV prevention strategy, and most used PrEP for the first three months. However, PrEP use fell among participants in this critical population during a year of follow-up clinic visits, although HIV incidence at 12 months was low. The preliminary results suggest that tailored, evidence-based adherence support strategies may be needed to durably engage young African women in consistent PrEP use. 

Most Women Use Vaginal Ring for HIV Prevention in Open-Label Study

In an open-label study of women in southern and eastern Africa, a vaginal ring that is inserted once a month and slowly releases an antiviral drug was estimated to reduce the risk of HIV by 39%, according to statistical modeling. In addition, the study found that participants appeared to use the ring more in the open-label study than in a previous clinical trial. These and other results of the HIV Open Label Extension (HOPE) study were presented today at the 10th IAS Conference on HIV Science (IAS 2019) in Mexico City.

Faculty Profile: Susan Graham - Associate Professor, Global Health and Medicine

In late-May of 2019, Kenya’s high court voted to uphold laws criminalizing homosexual sex. This news was pertinent to Susan Graham, an Associate Professor in the UW Departments of Global Health and Medicine whose research focus is on HIV prevention and care for vulnerable populations. Graham began working in Kenya in 2004, and started research on HIV prevention and care for gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) there in 2006. 

They Thought This HIV Strategy Couldn't Work. But It Did

In high-income countries like the U.S., the standard of care for people infected by HIV is to provide antiretroviral pills when the virus is found, even when there are no symptoms of AIDS. The strategy staves off the disease and has a second – big – benefit. It's been shown to prevent the spread of HIV in sexual encounters. It's called "treatment as prevention" (TasP in medical jargon), or "test and treat."

But in low-income countries, "test and treat" is not the typical approach to prevention. There's been no research to support it.

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