22 August, 2006

Aids: One Week Of Hope!

The last one week has had some very interesting developments in the fight against HIV/AIDS! A few days ago, the International Aids Conference ended in Toronto, Canada; as always, such forums - give much hope to those affected and help in focusing the world's attention on the scourge.

Then two days ago, there was this: US scientists say they have discovered how HIV evades the body's natural defenses against viral infections. This discovery could help in finding better ways in fighting the disease. Roger Pebody, treatment specialist for Terrence Higgins Trust, said: "This study is promising, and we hope that it will help researchers develop new therapies that may be available over the next decade."

And now: '......male circumcision, and the not so new high-tech gels or drugs, could be the next big thing in the fight against HIV/Aids.'

Preliminary data presented at the 16th International Aids Conference in Toronto, Canada, from two studies in Kenya and Uganda last week corroborated the findings of a South African study which suggested that circumcision could confer a protective effect of about 60 per cent. This has raised the possibility that it will eventually be officially adopted as a preventative measure.

As for a vaccine: China has just come up with one! According to Chinese authorities, preliminary tests of its first AIDS vaccine indicate it could protect people against the HIV virus.

All these developments give much hope and optimism in facing the pandemic; as the disease continues to spread and claim many more millions of lives - more resources and funding, better infrastructure and methods and an increased, much more concerted effort by the World community - is needed, if the disease has to be brought under some kind of control. In Africa in particular, without a proper, extensive infrastructure - even with cheap drugs and more funding, many will continue to perish from the disease! If Africa has to succeed against HIV/AIDS, then it has to deal with the most important foundation in dealing with all kinds of diseases, this kind, in particular: the health care system itself!

Related: The Nata Village Blog, Blogswana, AIDS Combat Zone, The AIDS Awareness Blog

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