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PROGRESS: Home-based care worker Maria Silo (left) with patient Sellah Mwanza (center) in Ekwendeni, Malawi. Silo is HIV positive and on antiretrovirals, as is her husband, but their five children are all HIV negative because she got into the Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission program. Since starting antiretrovirals, Silo reports she is feeling better. © PAUL JEFFREY

The end of AIDS?

Gains and challenges in fighting HIV

Recent reports about the approval of Truvada, a drug that inhibits HIV infection, along with the story of a Seattle man, popularly known as the “Berlin patient,” who has reportedly been cured of AIDS, have generated hopes that the end of AIDS might indeed be near. But hints of an imminent cure have been heard before, and the wily virus has proved itself more clever than the scientists who plot its demise. The religious leaders, activists, caregivers and researchers who came to Washington, D.C., in July for the biennial International AIDS Conference warned that even if a cure is found, it won’t mean the end of AIDS.

 

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