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World AIDS Day: Follow the science towards an HIV cure

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Today, on World AIDS Day, as many countries lock out southern African countries due to the emergence of the new COVID-19 variant, Omicron, it has never been more urgent to #FollowtheScience.

Rather than resorting to travel bans that may cause more harm than good, IAS – the International AIDS Society – calls for a science-based international Code of Conduct for countries compelled to react to emerging COVID-19 information.

But in a time of dual pandemics, we cannot allow scientific progress in the HIV response to falter. The discovery of a safe and effective HIV cure would move us closer to a world in which HIV no longer presents a threat to public health and individual well-being.

The third edition of Research Priorities for an HIV Cure: IAS Global Scientific Strategy 2021 was published today in Nature Medicine. It highlights critical gaps, progress made, and the next steps science must follow towards a scalable, affordable and globally accessible cure.

Yet, one question remains: how close are we to an HIV cure? In this special World AIDS Day episode of HIV unmuted, the IAS podcast, we share the human endeavours behind the journey to a cure – and the hope it would bring to 38 million people living with HIV.

We are joined by:

  • IAS President-Elect Sharon Lewin on the latest cure strategies and the hope the most recent person cured of HIV, the “Esperanza patient”, provides for a cure

  • Adam, the “London patient”, and his doctor, Ravi Gupta, on the bone marrow transplant that cured Adam of HIV, and why it’s not a feasible cure for all

  • Moses “Supercharger” Nsubuga on how travelling home next to his coffin to die changed his life and led him to become an HIV cure advocate in Uganda

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