World Health Organization | 21 April 2017
New WHO data reveal that an estimated 325 million people worldwide are living with chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) or hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection. The WHO Global hepatitis report, 2017 indicates that the large majority of these people lack access to life-saving testing and treatment. As a result, millions of people are at risk of a slow progression to chronic liver disease, cancer, and death.
Access to medicines and treatment
Medicines Patent Pool | 21 April 2017
The Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) announced a new licence and technology transfer agreement with Egyptian company Pharco Pharmaceuticals for ravidasvir (RAV), an investigational direct-acting antiviral (DAA) with the potential of working across all six major hepatitis C genotypes. The agreement, signed on the sidelines of the International Liver Congress in Amsterdam, will enable competitive supply of RAV in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) including high prevalence nations Russia, Ukraine, Egypt and Iran.
Prevention of mother-to-child transmission
UNAIDS | 20 April 2017
The Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (JAIDS) has released a special supplement on the incredible journey of the Global plan towards the elimination of new HIV infections among children by 2015 and keeping their mothers alive (Global Plan), which documents the history of the Global Plan and outlines what the future holds as efforts to end AIDS among women, children and adolescents accelerate.
Irish Times | 20 April 2017
I would argue that Pre-exposure Prophylaxis is a solution which removes personal responsibility in relation to the transmission of HIV, increases the practice of unprotected sexual behaviour and will, ultimately, be responsible for widespread liver disease among gay populations in 10-15 years from now.
Hepatitis C symptoms and diagnosis
EASL press release | 20 April 2017
A multicenter, randomized, controlled study presented today found that long-term oral antibiotic therapy with norfloxacin improved the prognosis of people with life-threatening advanced liver disease. The study, presented at The International Liver Congress 2017 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, showed that norfloxacin administration for six months was associated with a reduced risk of death and infection at six months in patients with Child-Pugh class C cirrhosis, a very severe and advanced stage of liver disease.
The search for a cure
Science Daily | 19 April 2017
HIV proviruses can outnumber functional HIV 1000 copies to one and the faulty proteins they create can complicate efforts to measure a patient's viral load, exhaust immune systems, shield functional HIV from attack by natural means or drugs, and seriously complicate the development of a cure.
Global health initiatives
Health Affairs | 19 April 2017
At a time when the future of the program is in doubt due to possibly severe budget cuts to the US State Department (where PEPFAR is based) proposed by the new administration, we thought it would be an opportune moment to highlight some of the key studies we have published exploring PEPFAR’s role in fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic.
EATG / PrEP in Europe | 18 April 2017
Please read and share this letter signed by the European AIDS Treatment Group and the PrEP in Europe Initiative (PEI), a partnership of European prevention and policy NGOs. It requests Gilead Sciences to surrender their patent of Truvada® or otherwise make it possible for Truvada or generic equivalents of it to be offered at greatly reduced prices to all European health care systems so that it can be used as HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP).
LinkedIn | 18 April 2017
The global pharmaceutical market was estimated in USD 1.1 trillion in 2016. The top ten pharmaceutical companies in this market had share of around 40% in 2016 and the top 15 approximately 50%. A comparative analysis of the top 15 organisations was used to develop a ranking for these companies. The analysis shows that by far the biggest earners in terms of classes of drugs were oncology drugs and related immune-modulators. Two of the top ten companies featured hepatitis C drugs in their largest earners and one (Gilead) HIV drugs. The HPV vaccine Gardasil also made a lot of money for its developers Merck.
Medscape | 18 April 2017
In a now-leaked email, a senior executive at a large pharmaceutical company discussed destroying supplies of generic cancer drugs as part of a pricing battle with health authorities in Spain, according to a report in the British newspaper The Times.