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Issue No. 11 | March 6, 2009

News and Features

National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day is March 10, 2009

"The fourth annual National Women and Girls HIV/AIDS Awareness Day reminds us of the special risks that HIV/AIDS poses for women and girls. In response to the unique issues they face, we renew our resolve to help women and girls protect themselves from the virus and the disease.

Women and girls represent more than a quarter of all new HIV infections in the United States. More than 278,000 women and adolescent girls in this country are living with HIV; nearly 94,000 American women and girls with AIDS have died since the epidemic began. Globally, half of the estimated 33 million people living with HIV are female, but in sub-Saharan Africa, women make up almost 60 percent of the HIV-infected population."

Study: Disparity in HIV Testing Rates for Women in Labor with Undocumented HIV Status


"The implementation of rapid HIV-1 testing for women in labor with undocumented HIV status is an essential tool for the prevention of perinatal HIV transmission. Unfortunately, practices of rapid HIV testing for women with unknown HIV status in labor have not been studied. . . . We found that low utilization of rapid HIV-1 testing for women in labor with undocumented HIV status is mostly associated with the sociodemographic inequality of the population of women served. Continuous education of health care providers and a systematic review of rapid HIV testing utilization in the hospital setting are needed in order to achieve successful implementation of the current CDC recommendations."

Study: The Future of ART and Neurologic Deficits in HIV-Infected Children

"ART has remarkably reduced the incidence of neurologic deficits for the majority of infected children, but some patients do not experience these benefits and children living in poorer nations, who may not have access to antiretrovirals, are particularly at risk for developing neurologic deficits. This article reviews the neurologic symptoms of pediatric HIV infection that manifest as dopaminergic disruptions and explores potential future adjuvant therapies for HIV-related neurologic disorders in children."

Study: Lab-Created HIV Strain Could Make Non-Human Drug/Vaccine Testing Possible

"Scientists have created a strain of the human AIDS virus able to infect and multiply in monkeys in a step toward testing future vaccines in monkeys before trying them in people, according to a new study.


This strain of HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus, was developed by altering a single gene in the human version to allow it to infect a type of monkey called a pig-tailed macaque, the researchers said on Monday.


The genetically engineered virus, once injected into this monkey, proliferates almost as much as it does in people, but the animal ultimately suppresses it and the virus does not make it sick, they said."