Date: 
01/06/2010
Investigation Line: 

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

HAART rollout in Latin America and the Caribbean has increased from approximately 210,000 in 2003 to 390,000 patients in 2007, covering 62% (51%-70%) of eligible patients, with considerable variation among countries. No multi-cohort study has examined rates of and reasons for change of initial HAART in this region.

METHODOLOGY:

Antiretroviral-naïve patients >or= 18 years who started HAART between 1996 and 2007 and had at least one follow-up visit from sites in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico and Peru were included. Time from HAART initiation to change (stopping or switching any antiretrovirals) was estimated using Kaplan-Meier techniques. Cox proportional hazards modeled the associations between change and demographics, initial regimen, baseline CD4 count, and clinical stage.

PRINCIPAL FINDINGS:

Of 5026 HIV-infected patients, 35% were female, median age at HAART initiation was 37 years (interquartile range [IQR], 31-44), and median CD4 count was 105 cells/uL (IQR, 38-200). Estimated probabilities of changing within 3 months and one year of HAART initiation were 16% (95% confidence interval (CI) 15-17%) and 28% (95% CI 27-29%), respectively. Efavirenz-based regimens and no clinical AIDS at HAART initiation were associated with lower risk of change (hazard ratio (HR) = 1.7 (95% CI 1.1-2.6) and 2.1 (95% CI 1.7-2.5) comparing neverapine-based regimens and other regimens to efavirenz, respectively; HR = 1.3 (95% CI 1.1-1.5) for clinical AIDS at HAART initiation). The primary reason for change among HAART initiators were adverse events (14%), death (5.7%) and failure (1.3%) with specific toxicities varying among sites. After change, most patients remained in first line regimens.

CONCLUSIONS:

Adverse events were the leading cause for changing initial HAART. Predictors for change due to any reason were AIDS at baseline and the use of a non-efavirenz containing regimen. Differences between participant sites were observed and require further investigation.

Author: 
Date: 
01/03/2010
Investigation Line: 

Abstract

We used kernel density and scan statistics to examine the spatial distribution of cases of pediatric and adult American cutaneous leishmaniasis in an urban disease-endemic area in Salta Province, Argentina. Spatial analysis was used for the whole population and stratified by women > 14 years of age (n = 159), men > 14 years of age (n = 667), and children < 15 years of age (n = 213). Although kernel density for adults encompassed nearly the entire city, distribution in children was most prevalent in the peripheral areas of the city. Scan statistic analysis for adult males, adult females, and children found 11, 2, and 8 clusters, respectively. Clusters for children had the highest odds ratios (P < 0.05) and were located in proximity of plantations and secondary vegetation. The data from this study provide further evidence of the potential urban transmission of American cutaneous leishmaniasis in northern Argentina.

Date: 
01/11/2007
Investigation Line: 

Abstract

New therapeutic alternatives against leishmaniasis remain a priority. The activity of azithromycin against Leishmania (Leishmania) major has been previously demonstrated. Different responses among species of Leishmania make species-specific drug screening necessary. The activity of azithromycin against Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis and Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis was evaluated in golden hamsters infected through footpad injections of metacyclic promastigotes, and compared with untreated controls and animals treated with meglumine antimoniate. Footpad thickness, lesion cultures and dissemination sites were analyzed. Treatment of golden hamsters with oral azithromycin at 450mg/kg had no activity against infections with Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis. For infections due to Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis, azithromycin demonstrated significant activity relative to untreated controls, but inferior to meglumine antimoniate, for controlling lesion size. Neither drug was able to totally eliminate parasites from the lesions. It was concluded that azithromycin has activity against Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis but not against Leishmania (Leishmania) amazonensis in this model.

Date: 
01/10/2007
Investigation Line: 

Abstract

Azithromycin was compared with meglumine antimoniate for treatment of patients with cutaneous leishmaniasis. Patients were randomized to receive oral azithromycin, 500 mg/day (22 patients) or intramuscular meglumine antimoniate, 10 mg Sb/kg/day (23 patients), both for 28 days, with a second cycle of 15 days if necessary, and followed-up for one year after completion of treatment. Efficacy, defined as complete re-epithelization without relapse for 12 months after completing therapy, was 82.6% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 67-98%) for meglumine antimoniate and 45.5% (95% CI = 25-66%) for azithromycin. All patients who failed treatment with azithromycin were treated with meglumine antimoniate and clinically cured. Azithromycin was well tolerated; meglumine antimoniate caused arthralgias and local symptoms in 78% of the patients. In 17 cases, species identification was obtained; Leishmania (Viannia) braziliensis was identified in all of them. For the treatment of American cutaneous leishmaniasis caused by L. (V.) braziliensis, meglumine antimoniate is significatively more efficacious than azithromycin, which was clinically curative in almost half of the patients and well-tolerated.

Date: 
01/04/2006
Investigation Line: 

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate clinical, immunologic, and virologic performance of patients with nadir CD4 counts of >350 cells/microL upon treatment interruption.

DESIGN:

Randomized, open-label clinical trial of 48 weeks' duration.

METHODS:

Patients on effective highly active antiretroviral therapy, with nadir CD4 counts of >350 cells/microL and peak viral loads of <50,000 copies/mL were randomized to continue therapy or to interrupt antiretroviral medication. End points for patients with treatment interruption were CD4 counts of <350 cells/microL, viral loads of >1 log above the pretherapy values, or clinical symptoms attributable to HIV, at which point treatment was restarted. In the continuation group, the end points were virologic failure, opportunistic infections, and treatment discontinuation due to toxicities.

RESULTS:

Twenty patients were randomized to stop therapy and 16 patients to continue. Median CD4 counts at baseline were 643 cells/microL for the interruption group and 633 cells/microL for the continuation group. No end points were reached in the interruption group. By week 8, viral load returned to values comparable to those of pretherapy in all patients in the interruption group and remained stable until week 48. CD4 counts dropped in the interruption group (median loss of 156 cells/microL) at week 48. Significant decreases in venous lactate were observed in the interruption group.

CONCLUSIONS:

Treatment interruptions in patients with nadir CD4 counts of >350 cells/microL seem safe for at least 48 weeks. Pretherapy viral load appears as a valuable tool to predict its level at week 48.

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