The story of one vaccine: how to find a cure for HIV HIV

About 40 million people living with HIV are registered in the world. In Ukraine, every hundredth citizen aged 15 to 49 is infected.

Scientists have been trying for years to create a drug that can affect a wide range of strains of human immunodeficiency virus, but success is difficult. The virus is constantly mutating, so a person can not develop immunity to it.

On September 2, 2000, a prototype of the AIDS vaccine was introduced for the first time, gazeta.ua reports. The results of the first large clinical trial of the HIV vaccine, AIDSVax, were published in 2003. The vaccine contained fragments of the virus - gp120 glycoproteins. Its ineffectiveness has been demonstrated in clinical trials.

Then they set out to develop a vaccine aimed at stimulating cellular rather than humoral immunity. However, a study called STEP stopped in 2007.

Another large-scale study was led by Harvard Medical School professor Dan Baruk. The researchers tested different vaccine options on healthy participants aged 18 to 50 who were not infected with HIV. Each of them was vaccinated for 48 weeks. All vaccines were effective and safe for patients. At the same time, the researchers vaccinated the macaque against an HIV-like virus, and the vaccine protected the vast majority of the subjects. However, Professor Dan Baruk says it is too early to draw conclusions about the vaccine's ability to prevent infection.

In fact, this is not the first human vaccine to be tested on humans. For example, one of them was tested in Thailand. It showed a reduction in infection by almost a third. But these indicators are not enough for its widespread use.

Currently, the modified RV144 vaccine is being tested in a phase III clinical trial. The results will be published in 2021.

 

Distance learning in the field of HIV: Papua New Guinea provides virtual training for doctors

Distance learning is a new milestone in the development of the education system. Changes in the field of medicine, in particular, the direction of the fight against HIV and prevention of the spread of human immunodeficiency virus have not escaped. For example, the National Department of Health of Papua New Guinea has launched the country's first virtual training program for doctors prescribing antiretroviral treatment.

It is reported that in the 30 days since the launch of the program, 105 participants have registered, 70% of whom have not had the opportunity to attend any other training events in the last three years.

Participants gained access to 21 video lectures with a total duration of more than six hours. The materials are based on Google Class technology and focus on topics such as HIV treatment, care and maintenance, and monitoring and evaluation tools. Training materials include video lectures and test tasks that must be completed within seven days of registration.

This method of training has significantly reduced the costs of both organizers and participants. All doctors need to be successful is, for example, access to the Internet, an active e-mail account for registration, minimal computer skills, and so on. For some time, teachers remain available to health professionals and through the platform are ready to provide advice and help to understand in more detail the issues that may arise after the course.

The organizers and staff of the program are representatives of the National Technical Working Group on HIV, which includes the UNAIDS regional office. The Google Class platform is free; all material is stored on Google Drive, which remains available through Google's regular account.

Later, after the virtual classes, the training will be consolidated by control visits and field training sessions.

The new COVID-19 Law Lab will provide important information and support to combat COVID-19 worldwide

The COVID-19 Law Lab initiative was created to ensure the collection and sharing of legal documents from more than 190 countries. This will help to create and implement a strong legal framework to combat the pandemic, which will protect the health and well-being of individuals or communities, in line with international human rights standards.

Detailed laws will help build strong health care systems, test and register safe and effective drugs and vaccines, and enforce healthier and safer public spaces and workplaces. In addition, ill-conceived and ineffective regulations, which are not backed up by enforcement mechanisms, can harm marginalized populations, promote stigma and discrimination, and hamper pandemic remedies.

"Harmful legislation can increase stigma and discrimination, restrict people's rights and disrupt health measures," said Winnie Byanyima, UNAIDS Executive Director. "In order for pandemic measures to be effective, humane and sustainable, States must use the law as a tool to protect the rights and dignity of the people affected by COVID-19."

The COVID-19 Law Lab is a database of legislative action taken by countries in response to a pandemic. These include declarations of emergency, isolation and quarantine measures, disease surveillance and legal measures relating to the wearing of masks, social distancing, and access to medicines and vaccines.

COVID-19 Law Lab is a joint project of the United Nations Development Program, the World Health Organization, UNAIDS and the Institute of National and International Health Law. O'Neill at Georgetown University.

Viral hepatitis B: a lifelong disease

The Center of Public Health of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine informs that the number of people infected with hepatitis C in Ukraine is estimated at 1 million 300 thousand people, and hepatitis B - more than 500 thousand people. Viral hepatitis B and C pose a serious threat to public health. About 80% of cases of cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma are caused by viral hepatitis.

Early diagnosis of viral hepatitis is extremely important, because the treatment can prevent the development of diseases and serious liver damage

Viral hepatitis C is curable in 95% of cases. The treatment lasts from 12 to 24 weeks. Viral hepatitis B needs lifelong treatment. However, due to timely and regular use of drugs, the development of the disease can be significantly restrained. Treatment for viral hepatitis B and C can be obtained from the state budget. A map of health facilities that provide services for the diagnosis and treatment of viral hepatitis is here.

The disease can be prevented by triple vaccination. Vaccination of newborns against hepatitis B prevents the development of infection in the child and is the only reliable protection against this disease. Hepatitis B vaccination for children in Ukraine is free.

In Ukraine, vaccination of children against hepatitis B has been planned since 2002. Therefore, people born before 2002 are generally not protected from the disease, but can be immunized against hepatitis B in adulthood.

In November 2019, Ukraine joined the Global Strategy for the Elimination of Viral Hepatitis B and C. Our country has adopted a National Strategy for Combating HIV / AIDS, Tuberculosis and Viral Hepatitis until 2030. The goals of the State Strategy in terms of viral hepatitis until 2030 are:

  • prevention of 90% of new cases of viral hepatitis;
  • diagnosing 90% of people who have viral hepatitis and do not know about their disease;
  • treatment of 90% of patients (for people with viral hepatitis C - this involves complete recovery from the disease, and for people with hepatitis B - control over the development of the disease and prevention of liver damage).

The Strategy envisages strengthening the system of epidemiological surveillance of viral hepatitis, expanding access to diagnosis and treatment, introducing new simplified approaches to the detection and management of patients, raising general awareness of the problem of viral hepatitis.

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