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Wild Poliovirus Reaches More African Countries In 2009, WHO Official Says

Cases of polio have been reported in some African countries that have eradicated the disease, Luis Gomes Sambo, the WHO’s Africa regional director, said Monday at the opening of a child immunisation conference in Zimbabwe, Agence France-Presse reports (12/14).

Microbicide Does Not Reduce Women’s Risk Of HIV Infection, Study Shows

Pro 2000, a vaginal microbicide gel designed to reduce women’s risk of HIV infection, showed “no evidence that it reduces the risk of HIV infection,” according to the results of a series of clinical trials in Africa, Britain’s Medical Research Council (MRC) said on Monday, Reuters reports.

McClatchy Series Examines Africa’s Population

McClatchy published a three-part series examining the “population boom” in Africa. Summaries appear below. One article looks at the relationship between Africa’s rising population and poverty. “Although it’s frequently portrayed as a continent decimated by epidemics, starvation and war, Africa is gripped by one of the greatest population explosions ever…

ARTs Safe Without Routine Lab Tests, Lancet Study Finds

A Lancet study published online Tuesday validates the safety of administering first-line antiretroviral therapy (ART) to patients with HIV without routine toxicity and efficacy lab tests, “[b]ut tests of immune-system function might still be a good idea to monitor the progression of the disease and guide the second year of treatment,” HealthDay/U.S. News & World Report reports. Patients in Africa “often receive [HIV] drug treatment … without routine laboratory monitoring,” according to the article.

Also In Global Health News: Rotavirus Vaccine; Guinea Worm Eradication; Health Systems; Zulu King Calls For Male Circumcision

West African Group Calls For Governments To Vaccinate Children Against Rotavirus The West African Rotavirus Advisory Board is calling on governments to vaccinate children against rotavirus, IRIN reports. At a recent meeting in Dakar, Senegal, which was “financed by GlaxoSmithKline, makers of one of two rotavirus vaccines” the board issued…