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HIV, Malaria Fuel Each Other's Spread, Study Says
National Geographic Society ^ | 12-7-2006 | Scott Norris

Posted on 12/07/2006 2:57:28 PM PST by blam

HIV, Malaria Fuel Each Other's Spread, Study Says

Scott Norris
for National Geographic News

December 7, 2006

A deadly synergy between HIV and malaria appears to be fueling the spread of both diseases in Africa, a new study suggests.

The report, in tomorrow's edition of the journal Science, is the first to assess how Africa's increased rates of infection are in part caused by an interaction between the two diseases.

HIV makes people more vulnerable to malaria by weakening their immune systems, the researchers say, and contracting malaria may worsen a patient's pre-existing HIV infection, possibly making it more communicable.

Scientists researched the extent of this interaction by studying disease patterns in 200,000 adults in Kenya (see Kenya map).

The scientists found that within this group, about 5 percent of all HIV infections could be attributed to malaria, and 10 percent of all adult malaria episodes could be attributed to HIV.

Dual infection has caused an estimated 8,500 new HIV cases and nearly a million malaria episodes since 1980, the researchers say.

The study suggests that malaria may be a contributing factor to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in sub-Saharan Africa.

"These are two elephants affecting public health in Africa," said the study's lead author Leith Abu-Raddad of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

"Any interaction between them is consequential.

"We can't yet say how many cases of HIV malaria has caused over all of Africa," Abu-Raddad said.

AIDS, the disease caused by HIV, and malaria are two of biggest causes of death in sub-Saharan Africa, killing an estimated four million people a year combined.

Disease Dynamics

Scientists have known for some time that the immune system suppression caused by HIV can increase both the risk and severity of malaria infection.

But the idea that malaria might fuel the transmission of HIV is more recent.

Malaria sufferers often experience repeated, nonlethal outbreaks of the disease's flulike symptoms, with episodes varying in severity.

Studies have shown that in people infected with both diseases, the amount of HIV virus in their bodies goes up significantly during these malaria episodes.

Other research has demonstrated that as the amount of HIV virus goes up, so does the likelihood of HIV transmission through sexual intercourse.

These two factors together can cause HIV to spread more rapidly in populations where malaria is present.

"Malaria cannot be the only reason why HIV has so predominantly affected sub-Saharan Africa," said James Whitworth, a scientist not involved in the study, of the medical research nonprofit Wellcome Trust in London.

"But it is certainly plausible that is has been an important cofactor in driving transmission."

The discovery of a significant HIV-malaria interaction suggests the need for a coordinated approach in fighting both diseases, scientists say.

"It highlights the need to integrate health programs," said Jonathan Mermin, a physician with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention working in Kenya.

"People with HIV should be provided with insecticide-treated bed nets and [anti-malaria medications]," Mermin said.

"Efforts to prevent and eliminate malaria should be increased, alongside efforts to prevent and treat HIV infection."


TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: africa; diseases; hiv; malaria

1 posted on 12/07/2006 2:57:30 PM PST by blam
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To: blam

Gee, lucky nobody else suffers from any diseases.


2 posted on 12/07/2006 2:58:33 PM PST by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: blam

Makes sense, but HIV can still be [relatively] easily prevented.


3 posted on 12/07/2006 3:05:31 PM PST by Jedi Master Pikachu ( Enough with jerk freepers.)
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To: blam
Interesting in light of the fact that enviroweinies have a hissy over the use of DDT.
4 posted on 12/07/2006 3:05:43 PM PST by ThisLittleLightofMine
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To: ThisLittleLightofMine
"Interesting in light of the fact that enviroweinies have a hissy over the use of DDT."

That's because DDT saves lives of very poor Third World people that many globalist elites want to die.

5 posted on 12/07/2006 3:10:14 PM PST by Montfort
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past
AIDS/HIV has become so political that I don't know what or who to believe.

One basic fact is that AIDS is mostly an STD.

I have much less sympathy for someone who insists, with all of the political power of and encouragement from the Left, that it is their right to live that kind of lifestyle. And are shocked when they catch it.

Often the AIDS advocates compare what happens in Africa with what happens here in the US -- not true: apples and oranges.

People in Africa are living desperate lives. People here in the US are "having fun" when they catch the disease.
6 posted on 12/07/2006 3:15:02 PM PST by dhs12345
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To: ThisLittleLightofMine
Just chalk up another hundred million deaths to Rachel Carson.

Puts her in the big time, Fur Shur, along with Pol Pot, Stalin, Hitler and Mao.

7 posted on 12/07/2006 3:18:12 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: blam

HIV is easily avoidable. Just don't swap bodily fluids.


8 posted on 12/07/2006 3:18:39 PM PST by glorgau
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To: dhs12345
I agree.

One major issue for me on the subject is that I am repeatedly told other people's sex lives are none of my business. Okay. So the diseases they get from those sex lives should be none of my business as well. Why all of a sudden is it my business?

9 posted on 12/07/2006 3:19:34 PM PST by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: muawiyah

Even more shame on the United States for banning use of this product without legitimate studies.


10 posted on 12/07/2006 3:24:43 PM PST by ThisLittleLightofMine
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To: blam

Everything iz fine and de livin' be eazee in dat Affreekah!


11 posted on 12/07/2006 3:26:57 PM PST by Wally_Kalbacken
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past

Because, contrary to what Homosexuals claim, Gays are powerful, wealthy, and connected.

They are very effective at pushing their agenda.

Funny how they don't have the sense to abstain. Chances of catching AIDS is proportional to the number of partners that a person has had and is going to have. That is part of the male homosexual lifestyle -- sex with lots of partners.


12 posted on 12/07/2006 3:28:31 PM PST by dhs12345
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To: blam

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1750081/posts

I remember a Scientific American article, from maybe the late Seventies or early Eighties, on mosquitoes in Belle Glade, Florida carrying what was then called Human T-cell Leuko-Virus. Now HTLV-III is called Human Immunodeficiency Virus or HIV.

And we know that it is not possible for the HIV/AIDS virus to survive in a mosquito's gut. Just think of the excuses beyond contaminated blood transfusions. "It's just a mosquito bite. Put some ice on it."

Either we are equal or we are not. Good people ought to be armed where they will, with wits and guns. NRA KMA Merry Christmas


13 posted on 12/07/2006 3:43:30 PM PST by dhuffman@awod.com (The conspiracy of ignorance masquerades as common sense.)
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To: blam

keep your fly zipped and legs together.......the HIV problem is curable......then all you have to do is get treated for Malaria.

and while we are at it, bring back DDT to kill the mosquitos that are giving people Malaria.

case closed.


14 posted on 12/07/2006 3:47:38 PM PST by Vaquero ("An armed society is a polite society" Robert A. Heinlein)
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To: Montfort
why DDT should not have been banned and other environmental myths....
15 posted on 12/07/2006 3:53:17 PM PST by Vaquero ("An armed society is a polite society" Robert A. Heinlein)
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To: blam
So if you get Malaria, you develop a hankering for butt sex?
16 posted on 12/07/2006 4:10:21 PM PST by Mark was here (How can they be called "Homeless" if their home is a field?.)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past
The scientists found that within this group, about 5 percent of all HIV infections could be attributed to malaria, and 10 percent of all adult malaria episodes could be attributed to HIV.

This story has caught my eye. I wish it was more explicit. The source of malaria infection is through a mosquito bite. The source of the spread of HIV is through a co-mingling of body fluids, most frequently through sexual activity.

But, are they saying that if I'm bitten by a mosquito which has just bitten an HIV sufferer, I may also develop HIV because my frequent malaria attacks have weakened my immune system? Or, are they simply saying that a weakened immune system leads a person to be more susceptible to either or both diseases?

The difference is crucial. If the former, then my daughter is heading on plane back to the US immediately. If the latter, then we have nothing to worry about.

17 posted on 12/07/2006 4:11:07 PM PST by Jemian (PAM of JT ~~ If life were "fair", we'd all go to hell. I'm glad there is grace.)
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To: dhuffman@awod.com
And we know that it is not possible for the HIV/AIDS virus to survive in a mosquito's gut.

Thank you. That answers my question. My daughter stays with us.

18 posted on 12/07/2006 4:13:32 PM PST by Jemian (PAM of JT ~~ If life were "fair", we'd all go to hell. I'm glad there is grace.)
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To: Mark was here

Not true.


19 posted on 12/07/2006 4:15:00 PM PST by Jemian (PAM of JT ~~ If life were "fair", we'd all go to hell. I'm glad there is grace.)
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To: Jemian

I was being sarcastic. I apologize for attempting humor in a public forum. I am humor deficient and should know better.

I/we DO NOT KNOW that HIV cannot survive in a mosquito's gut.

Either we are equal or we are not. Good people ought to be armed where they will, with wits and guns. NRA KMA Merry Christmas


20 posted on 12/07/2006 4:19:53 PM PST by dhuffman@awod.com (The conspiracy of ignorance masquerades as common sense.)
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To: Jemian

Re co-mingling of bodily fluids; it takes place in the mosquito's gut hypothetically.

Either we are equal or we are not. Good people ought to be armed where they will, with wits and guns. NRA KMA Merry Christmas


21 posted on 12/07/2006 4:22:49 PM PST by dhuffman@awod.com (The conspiracy of ignorance masquerades as common sense.)
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To: Jemian

I agree. Let's focus on the mosquito issue is a big deal and I do not resent helping out with that issue at all.


22 posted on 12/07/2006 4:25:39 PM PST by The Ghost of FReepers Past (Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light..... Isaiah 5:20)
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To: The Ghost of FReepers Past

"One major issue for me on the subject is that I am repeatedly told other people's sex lives are none of my business. Okay. So the diseases they get from those sex lives should be none of my business as well. Why all of a sudden is it my business?"

Bingo!


23 posted on 12/07/2006 4:33:18 PM PST by babygene
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