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Researchers At AIDS 2016 Approach Ending AIDS Epidemic, Finding Cure With Caution, Hope

Agence France-Presse: Researchers warn of no quick HIV cure
“Researchers on Tuesday praised progress made towards developing an HIV cure, but said it was impossible to tell when or even if a cure for the devastating epidemic would be found. … Last week, scientists unveiled an aggressive strategy to develop an outright cure, but many of those in Durban warned it was still a young field of research. ‘A true cure is an aspirational goal,’ said principal author of the strategy Professor Sharon Lewin. She said remission — the ability of a patient to stop taking antiretroviral treatment and remain healthy — was the intermediate goal…” (7/19).

Devex: Step by step: The road to ending the AIDS epidemic
“…While achieving these 90-90-90 goals would set the world on course to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 — in line with the Sustainable Development Goals — the reality is that only 51 percent of people know their status and of the 37 million people living with HIV, 17 million are on ART. As the 21st International AIDS Conference opens this week in Durban, South Africa, activists are calling for treatment for all. … Devex sat down with [UNAIDS Executive Director Michel] Sidibé at AIDS 2016 to discuss the road ahead…” (Cousins, 7/18).

Financial Times: Gains in global fight against AIDS being threatened by complacency
“…[Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Peter] Piot says the disease will not be beaten without an effective vaccine, the discovery of which has proved elusive. Drug resistance is another problem, particularly in countries where sudden halts in the supply of antiretrovirals give the virus a chance to rebound in patients. More worryingly, because HIV is no longer considered a death sentence, people have become more careless about avoiding infection, particularly through unsafe sex…” (Pilling/Mahr, 7/19).

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