- News Home
17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
- About Us
AIDS Deaths Dropped Dramatically
25 March 1998 6:00 pm
Potent drug cocktails cut the death rate a whopping 75% among AIDS patients in a large health trial. The finding, reported in tomorrow's New England Journal of Medicine, underscores the dramatic success of protease inhibitors and other new drugs. But researchers warn that the long-term benefits--and possible side effects--of the drugs are unclear.
After the 1995 debut of protease inhibitors, which prevent HIV from replicating, immune cell counts in patients on the drugs generally began to stabilize and deaths started to decline. To better quantify the trend, researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta and several other institutions tracked the treatment and health of 1255 AIDS outpatients from 1994 to 1997.
The patients' death rate--measured as the number of deaths per 100 person-years of observation--plummeted nearly 75% almost immediately after they began taking protease inhibitors and other antiretroviral drugs in the second half of 1995, the researchers say. They noted a similar decline in the incidence of the three most common AIDS-related infections: cytomegalovirus, tuberculosis, and pneumonia.
These encouraging results should not "give the impression that the search for better therapies is over," says Robert Gallo of the Institute of Human Virology in Baltimore. Antiretroviral therapies do not eliminate HIV from the body, and the drugs are extremely expensive, costing at least $12,000 per year.