St. Louis Post-Dispatch Profiles HIV ‘Nonprogressors’
The St. Louis Post-Dispatch on Sunday profiled Steve Newsom, a St. Louis man who is one of a "handful" of "nonprogressors" -- HIV-positive individuals who do not take antiretroviral drugs but whose disease is not progressing to AIDS. Newsom, who tested positive for HIV in 1995, is participating in a study conducted by researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases investigating how the immune systems of nonprogressors manage to control HIV. Some of the study findings will be published in a paper in the Sept. 30 issue of the journal Nature Immunology, in which the scientists will explain why CD8+ T cells function differently in nonprogressors than in other HIV-positive individuals. Although the scientists would not discuss the study findings before the publication of the paper, Dr. Mark Connors, a senior clinical investigator with NIAID's Laboratory of Immunoregulation and a study co-author, said that understanding nonprogressors' immune systems may help scientists develop HIV vaccines or therapies. "These individuals hold some important answers to how the immune system beats HIV," Connors said (Shelton, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 9/22).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.