June 14, 2012

Follow Breakthroughs for the latest R&D news from AIDS 2012

Communications Officer

It’s exciting to see that research is a central theme of this year’s AIDS 2012 conference in Washington, DC. The biennial gathering of the world’s top HIV/AIDS scientists, advocates, and policymakers comes on the heels of some of the most significant research results for new HIV prevention and treatment tools in recent years, and the Breakthroughs blog will be at the conference from July 22 to 27, reporting on these research and development (R&D) advances.

In a press release made public this week from the AIDS 2012 organizers, R&D efforts stand out as a critical component of efforts to turn the tide against the pandemic. The release recognizes that in the last few years, several trials—including HPTN 052, TDF2, Partners PrEP, and iPrEx—have demonstrated with “solid evidence the efficacy of HIV treatment as prevention, while other studies are currently investigating the possibility of a cure for HIV.” The official conference program, now available online, indicates that even more R&D advances in HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention could be announced at the conference.

“Thanks to these scientific advances, for the first time we have a real opportunity to make a major dent in the epidemic,” said Elly Katabira, AIDS 2012 international chair and president of the International AIDS Society. The conference has also secured an impressive list of keynote speakers, including former US President Bill Clinton, US Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Sir Elton John, South African Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi, and philanthropist Bill Gates.

Thanks to scientific advances, for the first time the world has a real opportunity to make a major dent in the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Photo credit: PATH/Evelyn Hockstein.

Make sure to follow us on Breakthroughs for the latest R&D announcements from the conference, as well as significant policy news and implications for HIV prevention and treatment tools. We’ll also bring you the latest updates from GHTC members supporting these new HIV/AIDS technologies, including AVAC, the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, the International Partnership for Microbicides, and the Population Council.

“AIDS 2012 represents a unique occasion to mobilize policymakers, governments, NGOs, scientists, people living with HIV, and civil society to join forces,” said Diane Havlir, AIDS 2012 co-chair and professor of medicine at the University of California. “Despite the global turbulent economic climate we cannot miss this historic moment, and it is vital to continue to attract funding to invest in AIDS research and promote programs based on effectiveness and efficiency in order to optimize the use of resources.” We at the GHTC couldn’t agree more, and look forward to sharing what promises to be monumental R&D and policy news from AIDS 2012.

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