October 21, 2010
This is part of a series of articles summarizing presentations from the 1st International Workshop on HIV & Aging, which took place in Baltimore, Md., from Oct. 4 to Oct. 5, 2010. Jump to the table of contents to see the other articles in this series.
Although this conference focused on basic science and epidemiology of aging with HIV, it was a great summary of the current state of research and where the main deficits are. We have enough data on the incidence of many of these health issues; it is time now to start testing different therapeutic interventions to improve frailty, bone mass, cognitive function, immune activation and senescence, as well as other evolving issues.
The challenge now is how to overcome limitations in research funding, how to decide what doctors should tell their HIV-positive patients while we wait for more data, how we can attract new researchers to an aging field (no pun intended), and how the upcoming changes in health care will affect those of us who, like me, are aging with HIV.
Although there was considerable discussion at this conference about disorders related to HIV and aging, there was little said about how to treat these problems. To close, I've put together a brief list of therapeutic areas that I feel would be especially worth looking into:
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