Kaiser Daily HIV/AIDS Report Highlights Recently Released Journal Articles
The following highlights recently released journal articles on HIV/AIDS.
- "Men's Role in the Heterosexual HIV Epidemic," Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin of the New York Academy of Medicine: The Journal of Urban Health in August released a special issue that focuses on men's role in the heterosexual spread of HIV in the U.S. According to the journal, heterosexual transmission accounts for 35% of new HIV cases in the U.S., with 64% of these cases occurring in women. The studies featured in the issue find that 21% to 41% of HIV-positive men had had unprotected sex with an HIV-negative woman or a woman whose HIV status is unknown; that HIV-positive men use condoms inconsistently; that young HIV-positive men and men with a consistent partner are more likely have unprotected sex; that receiving antiretroviral drugs, being older and being optimistic reduces the risk that an HIV-positive man will have unprotected sex; and that more HIV-positive men are sexually active with women than exclusively with men, which increases the risk that their female partners will be exposed to HIV. The researchers, based on their studies' findings, suggest that more HIV prevention efforts for men who have sex with women should be developed (NYAM release, 8/9).
- "How Do Intellectual Property Law and International Trade Agreements Affect Access to Antiretroviral Therapy?" PLoS Medicine: Michael Westerhaus of Brigham and Women's Hospital Department of Medicine in Boston and Arachu Castro of Harvard University's Department of Social Medicine, in a policy forum paper examine how U.S.-negotiated trade agreements and international property laws are delaying access to antiretroviral drugs. According to the researchers, "globalization has forced a deeper appreciation of the relationship between intellectual property law and global health," and there is a debate about "the value and role" of antiretroviral patents, manufacturing techniques and forms of drug delivery. The paper focuses on IP laws and the effect of the World Trade Organization's Doha Declaration -- "which affirmed the priority of public health over the protection of patents" -- and the role of patent law and trade agreements on IP law and suggests ways to "ensure and promote access to" antretrovirals in the "era of U.S.-led attempts to strengthen global IP law through the vehicle of 'free' trade agreements." According to the researchers, IP law -- in addition to poor health care systems, poor drug quality and poverty -- has "dire implications" for antiretroviral provision in resource-poor settings (Westerhaus/Castro, PLoS Medicine, 8/8).