Biotech Advances Have Improved HIV Testing, Drug Development, Opinion Piece Says
The Biotechnology Industry Organization's annual conference BIO 2004, which is being held this week in San Francisco, gives researchers the "opportunity to highlight advances in science and medicine that have resulted from biotechnological discoveries" in the field of HIV/AIDS research and "encourage and anticipate progress," Laboratory for Tumor and AIDS Virus Research Director Jay Levy writes in a San Francisco Chronicle opinion piece. Levy, who is also a University of California-San Francisco professor of medicine and a member of the UCSF AIDS Research Institute executive committee, says that biotechnology advances have "led to better diagnostic tests for defining HIV infection, for measuring the effect of the virus on the immune system and for the development of drugs that help control the virus." He adds that biotechnology in research institutions and industry "promises to uncover novel approaches for improving immune function in HIV-infected individuals." Levy says that with "advancements in biotechnology" -- including improvements in protein identification procedures and gene detection methods -- "problems we now face can be better approached." New "technologies, new approaches and new discoveries" in biotechnology will continue to "advance our ability to control HIV, as well as cancer and other human diseases," Levy concludes (Levy, San Francisco Chronicle, 6/8).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.