HIV AIDS

Two cases of a “functional cure” for HIV/AIDS

By Shane Feratu, 30 March 2013

Researchers have been able to neutralize the HIV virus from causing harm in two separate studies.

AIDS conference reflects failure to tackle deepening catastrophe

By Barry Mason, 12 August 2008

The latest figures for the AIDS epidemic were published by UNAIDS and WHO (World Health Organisation) last month. Two million people died of AIDS in 2007—of whom one-quarter of a million were children. A total of 33 million people are now living with HIV/AIDS, two million of them children.

Report details spread of global AIDS epidemic

By Barry Mason, 13 January 2007

Last year saw a major spread of the global AIDS epidemic. According to the report “2006 Aids Epidemic Update” published by the United Nations bodies UNAIDS and the World Health Organisation (WHO), an estimated 39.5 million people now live with HIV, and in 2006 alone 4.3 million became infected with the HIV virus and 2.9 million died from the effects of AIDS.

Anger at International AIDS Conference over Bush administration’s policies

By Carol Divjak, 29 July 2004

More than 17,000 delegates, including scientists, health officials, policy makers and activists, gathered from July 11 to 17 at the 15th International AIDS Conference in Bangkok. What dominated the agenda was not so much the latest scientific research but the failure of the major powers, especially the US, to provide the resources needed to deal with the rapidly spreading AIDS epidemic.

Huge funding shortfall for global AIDS epidemic

By Trevor Johnson and Chris Talbot, 26 July 2004

The UNAIDS report released at the fifteenth International AIDS Conference last week shows that there is an escalating shortfall in the funding required to deal with the global spread of AIDS.

Scientists identify a gene that may block HIV

By Perla Astudillo, 6 May 2004

Scientists at the Harvard Medical School in the United States have identified a human gene, known as TRIM5-alpha, which is capable of preventing the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) from replicating inside cells. While the discovery, announced in February, is unlikely to lead to any immediate medical breakthrough, it is an important step in understanding the life cycle of HIV and has the potential to enable the future development of a drug to block HIV infection.

Eastern Europe faces HIV-AIDS epidemic

By Richard Tyler, 12 December 2003

The reintroduction of the free market into the former Eastern Bloc countries has unleashed a health catastrophe.

UN International AIDS Day report reveals growing pandemic

By Ann Talbot, 2 December 2003

Five million people were infected with HIV this year. This is a record number of new infections and indicates that the global AIDS epidemic is continuing to worsen.

Bush’s AIDS appointee spells out corporate agenda

By Chris Talbot, 9 October 2003

Randall Tobias, ex-Ely Lilly CEO and a member of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), was confirmed as head of the Bush administration’s Emergency Plan for AIDS by the US Senate last week.

US and Europe renege on AIDS pledges

By Richard Tyler, 22 July 2003

Pledges made by US president George W. Bush and European Union Commission president Romano Prodi to each provide $1 billion for the global fight against AIDS were proved worthless last week.

Bush uses AIDS funding as an instrument of foreign policy

By Barry Mason, 18 February 2003

US President George W. Bush announced $15 billion to fight HIV and AIDS in his State of the Union address on January 28. The proposed funds are to be spent in the African countries of Botswana, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Kenya, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. Also included are the two Caribbean countries Guyana and Haiti.

UN fund says money running out to fight AIDS

By Barry Mason and Ann Talbot, 11 November 2002

The Global Fund to Fight Aids, TB and Malaria has announced that unless donations double it will have to stop processing grant applications because requests for help have outstripped the money available.

South African government to appeal against AIDS drug verdict

By Barry Mason and Chris Talbot, 27 December 2001

The South African government is to appeal a court decision instructing it to make the drug Nevirapine universally available in order to prevent maternal transmission of the HIV virus. It is appealing to the Constitutional Court, the country’s highest legal body, against the right of a judge to set government policy.

AIDS epidemic grows unchecked

By Barry Mason, 8 December 2001

The United Nations (UN) has just issued its latest AIDS epidemic update. It is now 20 years since the immunodeficiency syndrome that came to be known as AIDS was first reported. In that time the disease has wrought death and debilitation across the planet. According to the UN in that 20 years more than 60 million people have been infected with the AIDS virus. Worldwide it is the fourth largest killer, whilst in sub-Saharan Africa it has become the foremost cause of death. The report states that in the year 2001 there are 40 million people living with the disease, five million people became infected and three million people died as a result of AIDS.

UN AIDS Conference ends as a fiasco

By Barry Mason and Chris Talbot, 9 July 2001

The three-day conference of the United Nations General Assembly held to debate the global AIDS crisis was intended as a face-saving exercise for Western governments.

The effects of the AIDS epidemic on Southern Africa's children

By Barry Mason, 28 May 2001

A British television documentary and a report by the charity Christian Aid entitled No Excuses—Facing up to sub-Saharan Africa's AIDS orphans crisis bring out the terrible impact of this pandemic on the children of Southern Africa.

HIV/AIDS danger increasing in the West

By Barry Mason, 11 May 2001

Whilst the spread of AIDS has become the biggest health disaster on a global scale, its effects have been mainly concentrated in Africa and the developing world. But recent evidence from Western Europe and the United States suggests that even in the developed world it is far from being under control.

South African court case ends in climb down by drug corporations

By Chris Talbot, 21 April 2001

The withdrawal of a court case by 39 pharmaceutical companies against the South African government is a set back for the industry's defence of patent rights. They brought the case against a paragraph in the South African 1997 Medicines Act that gives the Health Minister powers to override patent laws in a health emergency.

Marxism and the AIDS dissidents: Part 3—Drug therapies, statistical studies and the pharmaceutical corporations

2 February 2001

Below we print the concluding part of an extensive reply by Chris Talbot to a number of letters written supporting the theories of AIDS “dissidents”. The first two parts of Chris Talbot's reply, along with the original letters, were published on Tuesday, January 30 and Wednesday, February 1.

Marxism and the AIDS dissidents: Part 2—Scientific objectivity

1 February 2001

Marxism and the AIDS dissidents: Part 2—Scientific objectivity

1 February 2001

This is the second part of a reply by Chris Talbot to a number of letters written supporting the theories of AIDS dissidents. The first part, along with the original correspondence, was published yesterday and the conclusion will appear tomorrow, Friday, February 2.

Marxism and the AIDS dissidents:

Part 1-the dissidents' critique of orthodox AIDS theories

31 January 2001

Below Chris Talbot replies to a number of letters written supporting the theories of so-called AIDS “dissidents”. In brief, these claim that the link between HIV and AIDS has been invented by Western governments and the drugs companies to create a multibillion-dollar market for the drugs used in the treatment of AIDS; that several of these drugs cause AIDS; and that what has been classed as an AIDS epidemic in Africa in fact consists of people “dying in large numbers from the same diseases they have always died of”. As Chris Talbot illustrates in his reply, whatever the motives of individual dissidents, their claims invariably end up providing succour for the most reactionary political forces and, if accepted, would condemn millions worldwide to certain death.

United Nations AIDS report confirms worst epidemic in history

By Chris Talbot, 4 December 2000

An estimated three million people will have died of AIDS in 2000, the highest annual figure yet recorded. 500,000 of these were children. Although 2.4 million of the total deaths were in sub-Saharan Africa, the latest UNAIDS and World Health Organisation (WHO) statistics also show serious increases in the number of HIV infections in countries that are part of the former Soviet Union, as well as in South and South-East Asia. The UNAIDS/WHO report was timed to appear for World AIDS day, December 1.

An exchange of letters on AIDS/HIV

26 August 2000

The World Socialist Web Site has received the following letter from a reader on HIV/AIDS, to which Chris Talbot replies below.

AIDS in Africa: an indictment of an outmoded social order

By Fred Mazelis, 16 August 2000

The 13th International Conference on AIDS, held in Durban, South Africa last month, highlighted the social catastrophe unfolding on the African continent. The meeting took place in the country with the largest number of people infected by HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, on the continent that is home to 70 percent of the world's HIV-infected population.

UN report on AIDS paints a picture of devastation-Part 2

By Paul Scherrer, 18 July 2000

The United Nations and World Health Organization (WHO) report on AIDS paints a picture of devastation in Africa and warns of catastrophe in many other regions of the world, yet offers no solution to this raging epidemic.

UN report on AIDS paints a picture of devastation—Part 1

By Paul Scherrer, 17 July 2000

The United Nations and World Health Organization report on AIDS paints a picture of devastation in Africa and warns of catastrophe in many other regions of the world, yet offers no solution to this raging epidemic.

Australian schoolgirl contracts HIV via blood transfusion

By Kaye Tucker, 13 August 1999

The tragic news of a young girl infected with HIV via a blood transfusion has exposed serious problems in blood screening procedures in Australia. The girl, a primary school student, was given a transfusion during surgery at a major children's hospital in Melbourne. It is the first reported case of such an infection since blood products began being tested for HIV in 1985.