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1.  Defective dendritic cell response to toll like receptor 7/8 agonists in perinatally HIV infected children 
Pathogens and disease  2013;69(3):10.1111/2049-632X.12067.
Understanding the defects in innate immunity associated with perinatal HIV infection is prerequisite for the effective antiretroviral treatment. We therefore compared the innate immune response (Dendritic cell (DC) phenotype and function in peripheral blood by flow cytometry at baseline and 12 months in HIV infected children in order to determine the defect associated with perinatal HIV infection. As compared to controls patients had decreased numbers of total DC including plasmacytoid (p)DC and myeloid (m)DC and impaired function based on induction of maturation markers (CD83, CD80, CCR7) and cytokines TNF-α and IFN-α (exclusive to pDC) upon stimulation with TLR7/8 agonist Resiquimod. These abnormalities were evident in all three CD4 immune categories and persisted over 12 months; pDC function worsened in HIV+ children without treatment and improved slightly in those on HAART. In conclusion, a majority of perinatally HIV-infected older children without HAART remain clinically stable in the short term, but have demonstrable immunologic abnormalities indicative of defects in the innate immune system. Children initiated on HAART showed improvement in CD4 counts but didn’t show improvement in DC function over the short term.
doi:10.1111/2049-632X.12067
PMCID: PMC3838506  PMID: 23873734
Dendritic cells; innate immunity; pediatric HIV
2.  Global, regional, and national incidence and mortality for HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria during 1990–2013: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 
Murray, Christopher J L | Ortblad, Katrina F | Guinovart, Caterina | Lim, Stephen S | Wolock, Timothy M | Roberts, D Allen | Dansereau, Emily A | Graetz, Nicholas | Barber, Ryan M | Brown, Jonathan C | Wang, Haidong | Duber, Herbert C | Naghavi, Mohsen | Dicker, Daniel | Dandona, Lalit | Salomon, Joshua A | Heuton, Kyle R | Foreman, Kyle | Phillips, David E | Fleming, Thomas D | Flaxman, Abraham D | Phillips, Bryan K | Johnson, Elizabeth K | Coggeshall, Megan S | Abd-Allah, Foad | Ferede, Semaw | Abraham, Jerry P | Abubakar, Ibrahim | Abu-Raddad, Laith J | Abu-Rmeileh, Niveen Me | Achoki, Tom | Adeyemo, Austine Olufemi | Adou, Arsène Kouablan | Adsuar, José C | Agardh, Emilie Elisabet | Akena, Dickens | Al Kahbouri, Mazin J | Alasfoor, Deena | Albittar, Mohammed I | Alcalá-Cerra, Gabriel | Alegretti, Miguel Angel | Alemu, Zewdie Aderaw | Alfonso-Cristancho, Rafael | Alhabib, Samia | Ali, Raghib | Alla, Francois | Allen, Peter J | Alsharif, Ubai | Alvarez, Elena | Alvis-Guzman, Nelson | Amankwaa, Adansi A | Amare, Azmeraw T | Amini, Hassan | Ammar, Walid | Anderson, Benjamin O | Antonio, Carl Abelardo T | Anwari, Palwasha | Ärnlöv, Johan | Arsenijevic, Valentina S Arsic | Artaman, Ali | Asghar, Rana J | Assadi, Reza | Atkins, Lydia S | Badawi, Alaa | Balakrishnan, Kalpana | Banerjee, Amitava | Basu, Sanjay | Beardsley, Justin | Bekele, Tolesa | Bell, Michelle L | Bernabe, Eduardo | Beyene, Tariku Jibat | Bhala, Neeraj | Bhalla, Ashish | Bhutta, Zulfiqar A | Abdulhak, Aref Bin | Binagwaho, Agnes | Blore, Jed D | Basara, Berrak Bora | Bose, Dipan | Brainin, Michael | Breitborde, Nicholas | Castañeda-Orjuela, Carlos A | Catalá-López, Ferrán | Chadha, Vineet K | Chang, Jung-Chen | Chiang, Peggy Pei-Chia | Chuang, Ting-Wu | Colomar, Mercedes | Cooper, Leslie Trumbull | Cooper, Cyrus | Courville, Karen J | Cowie, Benjamin C | Criqui, Michael H | Dandona, Rakhi | Dayama, Anand | De Leo, Diego | Degenhardt, Louisa | Del Pozo-Cruz, Borja | Deribe, Kebede | Jarlais, Don C Des | Dessalegn, Muluken | Dharmaratne, Samath D | Dilmen, Uğur | Ding, Eric L | Driscoll, Tim R | Durrani, Adnan M | Ellenbogen, Richard G | Ermakov, Sergey Petrovich | Esteghamati, Alireza | Faraon, Emerito Jose A | Farzadfar, Farshad | Fereshtehnejad, Seyed-Mohammad | Fijabi, Daniel Obadare | Forouzanfar, Mohammad H | Paleo, Urbano Fra. | Gaffikin, Lynne | Gamkrelidze, Amiran | Gankpé, Fortuné Gbètoho | Geleijnse, Johanna M | Gessner, Bradford D | Gibney, Katherine B | Ginawi, Ibrahim Abdelmageem Mohamed | Glaser, Elizabeth L | Gona, Philimon | Goto, Atsushi | Gouda, Hebe N | Gugnani, Harish Chander | Gupta, Rajeev | Gupta, Rahul | Hafezi-Nejad, Nima | Hamadeh, Randah Ribhi | Hammami, Mouhanad | Hankey, Graeme J | Harb, Hilda L | Haro, Josep Maria | Havmoeller, Rasmus | Hay, Simon I | Hedayati, Mohammad T | Pi, Ileana B Heredia | Hoek, Hans W | Hornberger, John C | Hosgood, H Dean | Hotez, Peter J | Hoy, Damian G | Huang, John J | Iburg, Kim M | Idrisov, Bulat T | Innos, Kaire | Jacobsen, Kathryn H | Jeemon, Panniyammakal | Jensen, Paul N | Jha, Vivekanand | Jiang, Guohong | Jonas, Jost B | Juel, Knud | Kan, Haidong | Kankindi, Ida | Karam, Nadim E | Karch, André | Karema, Corine Kakizi | Kaul, Anil | Kawakami, Norito | Kazi, Dhruv S | Kemp, Andrew H | Kengne, Andre Pascal | Keren, Andre | Kereselidze, Maia | Khader, Yousef Saleh | Khalifa, Shams Eldin Ali Hassan | Khan, Ejaz Ahmed | Khang, Young-Ho | Khonelidze, Irma | Kinfu, Yohannes | Kinge, Jonas M | Knibbs, Luke | Kokubo, Yoshihiro | Kosen, S | Defo, Barthelemy Kuate | Kulkarni, Veena S | Kulkarni, Chanda | Kumar, Kaushalendra | Kumar, Ravi B | Kumar, G Anil | Kwan, Gene F | Lai, Taavi | Balaji, Arjun Lakshmana | Lam, Hilton | Lan, Qing | Lansingh, Van C | Larson, Heidi J | Larsson, Anders | Lee, Jong-Tae | Leigh, James | Leinsalu, Mall | Leung, Ricky | Li, Yichong | Li, Yongmei | De Lima, Graça Maria Ferreira | Lin, Hsien-Ho | Lipshultz, Steven E | Liu, Shiwei | Liu, Yang | Lloyd, Belinda K | Lotufo, Paulo A | Machado, Vasco Manuel Pedro | Maclachlan, Jennifer H | Magis-Rodriguez, Carlos | Majdan, Marek | Mapoma, Christopher Chabila | Marcenes, Wagner | Marzan, Melvin Barrientos | Masci, Joseph R | Mashal, Mohammad Taufiq | Mason-Jones, Amanda J | Mayosi, Bongani M | Mazorodze, Tasara T | Mckay, Abigail Cecilia | Meaney, Peter A | Mehndiratta, Man Mohan | Mejia-Rodriguez, Fabiola | Melaku, Yohannes Adama | Memish, Ziad A | Mendoza, Walter | Miller, Ted R | Mills, Edward J | Mohammad, Karzan Abdulmuhsin | Mokdad, Ali H | Mola, Glen Liddell | Monasta, Lorenzo | Montico, Marcella | Moore, Ami R | Mori, Rintaro | Moturi, Wilkister Nyaora | Mukaigawara, Mitsuru | Murthy, Kinnari S | Naheed, Aliya | Naidoo, Kovin S | Naldi, Luigi | Nangia, Vinay | Narayan, K M Venkat | Nash, Denis | Nejjari, Chakib | Nelson, Robert G | Neupane, Sudan Prasad | Newton, Charles R | Ng, Marie | Nisar, Muhammad Imran | Nolte, Sandra | Norheim, Ole F | Nowaseb, Vincent | Nyakarahuka, Luke | Oh, In-Hwan | Ohkubo, Takayoshi | Olusanya, Bolajoko O | Omer, Saad B | Opio, John Nelson | Orisakwe, Orish Ebere | Pandian, Jeyaraj D | Papachristou, Christina | Caicedo, Angel J Paternina | Patten, Scott B | Paul, Vinod K | Pavlin, Boris Igor | Pearce, Neil | Pereira, David M | Pervaiz, Aslam | Pesudovs, Konrad | Petzold, Max | Pourmalek, Farshad | Qato, Dima | Quezada, Amado D | Quistberg, D Alex | Rafay, Anwar | Rahimi, Kazem | Rahimi-Movaghar, Vafa | Rahman, Sajjad Ur | Raju, Murugesan | Rana, Saleem M | Razavi, Homie | Reilly, Robert Quentin | Remuzzi, Giuseppe | Richardus, Jan Hendrik | Ronfani, Luca | Roy, Nobhojit | Sabin, Nsanzimana | Saeedi, Mohammad Yahya | Sahraian, Mohammad Ali | Samonte, Genesis May J | Sawhney, Monika | Schneider, Ione J C | Schwebel, David C | Seedat, Soraya | Sepanlou, Sadaf G | Servan-Mori, Edson E | Sheikhbahaei, Sara | Shibuya, Kenji | Shin, Hwashin Hyun | Shiue, Ivy | Shivakoti, Rupak | Sigfusdottir, Inga Dora | Silberberg, Donald H | Silva, Andrea P | Simard, Edgar P | Singh, Jasvinder A | Skirbekk, Vegard | Sliwa, Karen | Soneji, Samir | Soshnikov, Sergey S | Sreeramareddy, Chandrashekhar T | Stathopoulou, Vasiliki Kalliopi | Stroumpoulis, Konstantinos | Swaminathan, Soumya | Sykes, Bryan L | Tabb, Karen M | Talongwa, Roberto Tchio | Tenkorang, Eric Yeboah | Terkawi, Abdullah Sulieman | Thomson, Alan J | Thorne-Lyman, Andrew L | Towbin, Jeffrey A | Traebert, Jefferson | Tran, Bach X | Dimbuene, Zacharie Tsala | Tsilimbaris, Miltiadis | Uchendu, Uche S | Ukwaja, Kingsley N | Uzun, Selen Begüm | Vallely, Andrew J | Vasankari, Tommi J | Venketasubramanian, N | Violante, Francesco S | Vlassov, Vasiliy Victorovich | Vollset, Stein Emil | Waller, Stephen | Wallin, Mitchell T | Wang, Linhong | Wang, XiaoRong | Wang, Yanping | Weichenthal, Scott | Weiderpass, Elisabete | Weintraub, Robert G | Westerman, Ronny | White, Richard A | Wilkinson, James D | Williams, Thomas Neil | Woldeyohannes, Solomon Meseret | Wong, John Q | Xu, Gelin | Yang, Yang C | Yano, Yuichiro | Yentur, Gokalp Kadri | Yip, Paul | Yonemoto, Naohiro | Yoon, Seok-Jun | Younis, Mustafa | Yu, Chuanhua | Jin, Kim Yun | El Sayed Zaki, Maysaa | Zhao, Yong | Zheng, Yingfeng | Zhou, Maigeng | Zhu, Jun | Zou, Xiao Nong | Lopez, Alan D | Vos, Theo
Lancet  2014;384(9947):1005-1070.
Summary
Background
The Millennium Declaration in 2000 brought special global attention to HIV, tuberculosis, and malaria through the formulation of Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 6. The Global Burden of Disease 2013 study provides a consistent and comprehensive approach to disease estimation for between 1990 and 2013, and an opportunity to assess whether accelerated progress has occurred since the Millennium Declaration.
Methods
To estimate incidence and mortality for HIV, we used the UNAIDS Spectrum model appropriately modified based on a systematic review of available studies of mortality with and without antiretroviral therapy (ART). For concentrated epidemics, we calibrated Spectrum models to fit vital registration data corrected for misclassification of HIV deaths. In generalised epidemics, we minimised a loss function to select epidemic curves most consistent with prevalence data and demographic data for all-cause mortality. We analysed counterfactual scenarios for HIV to assess years of life saved through prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) and ART. For tuberculosis, we analysed vital registration and verbal autopsy data to estimate mortality using cause of death ensemble modelling. We analysed data for corrected case-notifications, expert opinions on the case-detection rate, prevalence surveys, and estimated cause-specific mortality using Bayesian meta-regression to generate consistent trends in all parameters. We analysed malaria mortality and incidence using an updated cause of death database, a systematic analysis of verbal autopsy validation studies for malaria, and recent studies (2010–13) of incidence, drug resistance, and coverage of insecticide-treated bednets.
Findings
Globally in 2013, there were 1·8 million new HIV infections (95% uncertainty interval 1·7 million to 2·1 million), 29·2 million prevalent HIV cases (28·1 to 31·7), and 1·3 million HIV deaths (1·3 to 1·5). At the peak of the epidemic in 2005, HIV caused 1·7 million deaths (1·6 million to 1·9 million). Concentrated epidemics in Latin America and eastern Europe are substantially smaller than previously estimated. Through interventions including PMTCT and ART, 19·1 million life-years (16·6 million to 21·5 million) have been saved, 70·3% (65·4 to 76·1) in developing countries. From 2000 to 2011, the ratio of development assistance for health for HIV to years of life saved through intervention was US$4498 in developing countries. Including in HIV-positive individuals, all-form tuberculosis incidence was 7·5 million (7·4 million to 7·7 million), prevalence was 11·9 million (11·6 million to 12·2 million), and number of deaths was 1·4 million (1·3 million to 1·5 million) in 2013. In the same year and in only individuals who were HIV-negative, all-form tuberculosis incidence was 7·1 million (6·9 million to 7·3 million), prevalence was 11·2 million (10·8 million to 11·6 million), and number of deaths was 1·3 million (1·2 million to 1·4 million). Annualised rates of change (ARC) for incidence, prevalence, and death became negative after 2000. Tuberculosis in HIV-negative individuals disproportionately occurs in men and boys (versus women and girls); 64·0% of cases (63·6 to 64·3) and 64·7% of deaths (60·8 to 70·3). Globally, malaria cases and deaths grew rapidly from 1990 reaching a peak of 232 million cases (143 million to 387 million) in 2003 and 1·2 million deaths (1·1 million to 1·4 million) in 2004. Since 2004, child deaths from malaria in sub-Saharan Africa have decreased by 31·5% (15·7 to 44·1). Outside of Africa, malaria mortality has been steadily decreasing since 1990.
Interpretation
Our estimates of the number of people living with HIV are 18·7% smaller than UNAIDS’s estimates in 2012. The number of people living with malaria is larger than estimated by WHO. The number of people living with HIV, tuberculosis, or malaria have all decreased since 2000. At the global level, upward trends for malaria and HIV deaths have been reversed and declines in tuberculosis deaths have accelerated. 101 countries (74 of which are developing) still have increasing HIV incidence. Substantial progress since the Millennium Declaration is an encouraging sign of the effect of global action.
Funding
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(14)60844-8
PMCID: PMC4202387  PMID: 25059949
3.  Mycobacterial Antigen Driven Activation of CD14++CD16− Monocytes Is a Predictor of Tuberculosis-Associated Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome 
PLoS Pathogens  2014;10(10):e1004433.
Paradoxical tuberculosis-associated immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (TB-IRIS) is an aberrant inflammatory response occurring in a subset of TB-HIV co-infected patients initiating anti-retroviral therapy (ART). Here, we examined monocyte activation by prospectively quantitating pro-inflammatory plasma markers and monocyte subsets in TB-HIV co-infected patients from a South Indian cohort at baseline and following ART initiation at the time of IRIS, or at equivalent time points in non-IRIS controls. Pro-inflammatory biomarkers of innate and myeloid cell activation were increased in plasma of IRIS patients pre-ART and at the time of IRIS; this association was confirmed in a second cohort in South Africa. Increased expression of these markers correlated with elevated antigen load as measured by higher sputum culture grade and shorter duration of anti-TB therapy. Phenotypic analysis revealed the frequency of CD14++CD16− monocytes was an independent predictor of TB-IRIS, and was closely associated with plasma levels of CRP, TNF, IL-6 and tissue factor during IRIS. In addition, production of inflammatory cytokines by monocytes was higher in IRIS patients compared to controls pre-ART. These data point to a major role of mycobacterial antigen load and myeloid cell hyperactivation in the pathogenesis of TB-IRIS, and implicate monocytes and monocyte-derived cytokines as potential targets for TB-IRIS prevention or treatment.
Author Summary
Tuberculosis and HIV majorly impact host immune responses, resulting in immune deregulation and inflammation-driven tissue damage. Initiation of anti-retroviral therapy in patients with HIV-TB co-infection may result in immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome (TB-IRIS), a disorder associated with increased immunopathology due to unfettered inflammation after CD4+ T-cell reconstitution. Monocytes are critical to the innate immune system and play an important role in several inflammatory conditions associated with chronic infections. Immunopathogenesis of TB-IRIS has been linked to activation of the adaptive immune response against opportunistic infection, yet the role of monocytes is still unknown. Here we investigated associations between soluble markers of monocyte activation, differential activation of monocyte subsets and TB-IRIS prospectively in two geographically distinct HIV-TB co-infected patient cohorts. Prior to ART initiation, patients who developed IRIS displayed a biosignature of elevated soluble monocyte activation markers, which were closely related to the mycobacterial antigen load in sputum samples. Amongst monocyte subsets, we observed that pre-ART circulating CD14++CD16− cell frequency independently predicted TB-IRIS and expanded during IRIS events. This monocyte subset was tightly associated with systemic markers of inflammation, and was found to produce inflammatory cytokines. Identification of this monocyte subset and its link with inflammation may lead to conception of novel therapies reducing immunopathology in TB-IRIS.
doi:10.1371/journal.ppat.1004433
PMCID: PMC4183698  PMID: 25275318
4.  Consensus Statement on Research Definitions for Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis in Children 
Few children with drug-resistant (DR) tuberculosis (TB) are identified, diagnosed, and given an appropriate treatment. The few studies that have described this vulnerable population have used inconsistent definitions. The World Health Organization (WHO) definitions used for adults with DR-TB and for children with drug-susceptible TB are not always appropriate for children with DR-TB. The Sentinel Project on Pediatric Drug-Resistant Tuberculosis was formed in 2011 as a network of experts and stakeholders in childhood DR-TB. An early priority was to establish standardized definitions for key parameters in order to facilitate study comparisons and the development of an evidence base to guide future clinical management. This consensus statement proposes standardized definitions to be used in research. In particular, it suggests consistent terminology, as well as definitions for measures of exposure, drug resistance testing, previous episodes and treatment, certainty of diagnosis, site and severity of disease, adverse events, and treatment outcome.
doi:10.1093/jpids/pit012
PMCID: PMC3665326  PMID: 23717785
Pediatric; Children; Tuberculosis; Drug-Resistance; Definition; Consensus
6.  Profile and Response to Anti-Tuberculosis Treatment among Elderly Tuberculosis Patients Treated under the TB Control Programme in South India 
PLoS ONE  2014;9(3):e88045.
Introduction
The demographic transition in India has resulted in an increase in the elderly population. There is limited data on the profile of elderly tuberculosis (TB) patients and their treatment outcomes in India.
Objective
To compare the clinical profile, presentation and response to anti-TB treatment among elderly (≥60 yrs) and younger (15–59 yrs) TB patients treated under the Revised National TB Control programme.
Methodology
Retrospective cohort analysis of TB patients treated from May 1999 to December 2004 in one Tuberculosis Unit of Tiruvallur district, South India.
Results
Records of 865 elderly and 4343 younger TB patients were examined: elderly were more likely to be male (84% vs. 71%), smokers (46% vs.37%), illiterate (63% vs. 45%), identified by active case finding through survey (19% vs. 11%), have pulmonary TB (96% vs. 91%) and initial smear negative disease (46% vs. 36%) compared to younger (for all p<0.001). Among a total of 352 elderly and 1933 younger new smear positive pulmonary TB, the elderly had higher loss to follow-up (15% vs. 11%; p = 0.03) and death rates (9% vs. 4%; p<0.001). Mycobacterium tuberculosis susceptibility to first line anti-TB drugs did not differ (elderly 87% vs. younger 84%) (p = 0.20). Side effects related to anti-TB drugs were reported by a higher proportion of elderly patients (63% vs. 54%) (p = 0.005). Previously treated patients had similar treatment outcomes in both the groups.
Conclusion
Elderly TB patients are less likely to have smear positive disease. Newly diagnosed elderly TB patients are more likely to be lost to follow-up or die and report drug side effects. Suitable interventions need to be developed for effective management and better treatment outcomes of TB in the elderly.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0088045
PMCID: PMC3949670  PMID: 24618888
8.  Lack of association between plasma levels of non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors & virological outcomes during rifampicin co-administration in HIV-infected TB patients 
Background & objectives:
Among patients with HIV-associated tuberculosis (TB), reduced plasma non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) concentrations during rifampicin (RMP) co-administration could lead to HIV treatment failure. This study was undertaken to examine the association between plasma nevirapine (NVP) and efavirenz (EFV) concentrations and virological outcomes in patients infected with HIV-1 and TB.
Methods:
This was a nested study undertaken in a clinical trial of patients with HIV-1 and TB, randomized to two different once-daily antiretroviral treatment (ART) regimens along with anti-TB treatment (ATT). Trough concentrations of plasma NVP and EFV were estimated at months 1 (during ATT and ART) and 6 months (ART only) by HPLC. Plasma HIV-1 RNA level >400 copies/ml or death within 6 months of ART were considered as unfavourable outcomes. Genotyping of CYP2B6 516G>T polymorphism was performed.
Results:
Twenty nine per cent of patients in NVP arm had an unfavourable outcome at 6 months compared to 9 per cent in EFV arm (P<0.08). The mean NVP and EFV levels estimated at 1 and 6 months did not significantly differ between favourable and unfavourable responders. Logistic regression analysis showed CYP2B6 516G>T polymorphism significantly associated with virologic outcome in patients receiving EFV–based regimen.
Interpretation & conclusions:
Trough plasma concentrations of NVP and EFV did not show any association with response to ART in patients on ATT and once-daily ART. CYP2B6 516G>T polymorphism was associated with virologic outcome among patients on EFV.
PMCID: PMC3978988  PMID: 24521642
HIV-1 & tuberculosis; NNRTIs; rifampicin; TDM; virologic outcome
9.  Prevalence of Tobacco Use in Urban, Semi Urban and Rural Areas in and around Chennai City, India 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(10):e76005.
Background
Tobacco use leads to many health complications and is a risk factor for the occurrence of cardio vascular diseases, lung and oral cancers, chronic bronchitis etc. Almost 6 million people die from tobacco-related causes every year. This study was conducted to measure the prevalence of tobacco use in three different areas around Chennai city, south India.
Methods
A survey of 7510 individuals aged > = 15 years was undertaken covering Chennai city (urban), Ambattur (semi-urban) and Sriperumbudur (rural) taluk. Details on tobacco use were collected using a questionnaire adapted from both Global Youth Tobacco Survey and Global Adults Tobacco Survey.
Results
The overall prevalence of tobacco use was significantly higher in the rural (23.7%) compared to semi-urban (20.9%) and urban (19.4%) areas (P value <0.001) Tobacco smoking prevalence was 14.3%, 13.9% and 12.4% in rural, semi-urban and urban areas respectively. The corresponding values for smokeless tobacco use were 9.5%, 7.0% and 7.0% respectively. Logistic regression analysis showed that the odds of using tobacco (with smoke or smokeless forms) was significantly higher among males, older individuals, alcoholics, in rural areas and slum localities. Behavioural pattern analysis of current tobacco users led to three groups (1) those who were not reached by family or friends to advice on harmful effects (2) those who were well aware of harmful effects of tobacco and even want to quit and (3) those are exposed to second hand/passive smoking at home and outside.
Conclusions
Tobacco use prevalence was significantly higher in rural areas, slum dwellers, males and older age groups in this region of south India. Women used mainly smokeless tobacco. Tobacco control programmes need to develop strategies to address the different subgroups among tobacco users. Public health facilities need to expand smoking cessation counseling services as well as provide pharmacotherapy where necessary.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0076005
PMCID: PMC3788037  PMID: 24098418
10.  Clinical Impact and Cost-Effectiveness of Expanded Voluntary HIV Testing in India 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(5):e64604.
Background
Despite expanding access to antiretroviral therapy (ART), most of the estimated 2.3 to 2.5 million HIV-infected individuals in India remain undiagnosed. The questions of whom to test for HIV and at what frequency remain unclear.
Methods
We used a simulation model of HIV testing and treatment to examine alternative HIV screening strategies: 1) current practice, 2) one-time, 3) every five years, and 4) annually; and we applied these strategies to three population scenarios: 1) the general Indian population (“national population”), i.e. base case (HIV prevalence 0.29%; incidence 0.032/100 person-years [PY]); 2) high-prevalence districts (HIV prevalence 0.8%; incidence 0.088/100 PY), and 3) high-risk groups (HIV prevalence 5.0%; incidence 0.552/100 PY). Cohort characteristics reflected Indians reporting for HIV testing, with a median age of 35 years, 66% men, and a mean CD4 count of 305 cells/µl. The cost of a rapid HIV test was $3.33. Outcomes included life expectancy, HIV-related direct medical costs, incremental cost-effectiveness ratios (ICERs), and secondary transmission benefits. The threshold for “cost-effective” was defined as 3x the annual per capita GDP of India ($3,900/year of life saved [YLS]), or for “very cost-effective” was <1x the annual per capita GDP ($1,300/YLS).
Results
Compared to current practice, one-time screening was very cost-effective in the national population (ICER: $1,100/YLS), high-prevalence districts (ICER: $800/YLS), and high-risk groups (ICER: $800/YLS). Screening every five years in the national population (ICER: $1,900/YLS) and annual screening in high-prevalence districts (ICER: $1,900/YLS) and high-risk groups (ICER: $1,800/YLS) were also cost-effective. Results were most sensitive to costs of care and linkage-to-care.
Conclusions
In India, voluntary HIV screening of the national population every five years offers substantial clinical benefit and is cost-effective. Annual screening is cost-effective among high-risk groups and in high-prevalence districts nationally. Routine HIV screening in India should be implemented.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0064604
PMCID: PMC3669338  PMID: 23741348
11.  Paradoxical Tuberculosis Immune Reconstitution Inflammatory Syndrome (TB-IRIS) in HIV Patients with Culture Confirmed Pulmonary Tuberculosis in India and the Potential Role of IL-6 in Prediction 
PLoS ONE  2013;8(5):e63541.
Background
The incidence, manifestations, outcome and clinical predictors of paradoxical TB-IRIS in patients with HIV and culture confirmed pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) in India have not been studied prospectively.
Methods
HIV+ patients with culture confirmed PTB started on anti-tuberculosis therapy (ATT) were followed prospectively after anti-retroviral therapy (ART) initiation. Established criteria for IRIS diagnosis were used including decline in plasma HIV RNA at IRIS event. Pre-ART plasma levels of interleukin (IL)-6 and C-reactive protein (CRP) were measured. Univariate and multivariate logistic regression models were used to evaluate associations between baseline variables and IRIS.
Results
Of 57 patients enrolled, 48 had complete follow up data. Median ATT-ART interval was 28 days (interquartile range, IQR 14–47). IRIS events occurred in 26 patients (54.2%) at a median of 11 days (IQR: 7–16) after ART initiation. Corticosteroids were required for treatment of most IRIS events that resolved within a median of 13 days (IQR: 9–23). Two patients died due to CNS TB-IRIS. Lower CD4+ T-cell counts, higher plasma HIV RNA levels, lower CD4/CD8 ratio, lower hemoglobin, shorter ATT to ART interval, extra-pulmonary or miliary TB and higher plasma IL-6 and CRP levels at baseline were associated with paradoxical TB-IRIS in the univariate analysis. Shorter ATT to ART interval, lower hemoglobin and higher IL-6 and CRP levels remained significant in the multivariate analysis.
Conclusion
Paradoxical TB–IRIS frequently complicates HIV-TB therapy in India. IL-6 and CRP may assist in predicting IRIS events and serve as potential targets for immune interventions.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0063541
PMCID: PMC3656926  PMID: 23691062
12.  Evaluation of Tuberculosis Diagnostics in Children: 2. Methodological Issues for Conducting and Reporting Research Evaluations of Tuberculosis Diagnostics for Intrathoracic Tuberculosis in Children. Consensus From an Expert Panela 
The Journal of Infectious Diseases  2012;205(Suppl 2):S209-S215.
Confirming the diagnosis of childhood tuberculosis is a major challenge. However, research on childhood tuberculosis as it relates to better diagnostics is often neglected because of technical difficulties, such as the slow growth in culture, the difficulty of obtaining specimens, and the diverse and relatively nonspecific clinical presentation of tuberculosis in this age group. Researchers often use individually designed criteria for enrollment, diagnostic classifications, and reference standards, thereby hindering the interpretation and comparability of their findings. The development of standardized research approaches and definitions is therefore needed to strengthen the evaluation of new diagnostics for detection and confirmation of tuberculosis in children.
In this article we present consensus statements on methodological issues for conducting research of Tuberculosis diagnostics among children, with a focus on intrathoracic tuberculosis. The statements are complementary to a clinical research case definition presented in an accompanying publication and suggest a phased approach to diagnostics evaluation; entry criteria for enrollment; methods for classification of disease certainty, including the rational use of culture within the case definition; age categories and comorbidities for reporting results; and the need to use standard operating procedures. Special consideration is given to the performance of microbiological culture in children and we also recommend for alternative methodological approaches to report findings in a standardized manner to overcome these limitations are made. This consensus statement is an important step toward ensuring greater rigor and comparability of pediatric tuberculosis diagnostic research, with the aim of realizing the full potential of better tests for children.
doi:10.1093/infdis/jir879
PMCID: PMC3334504  PMID: 22476719
13.  Evaluation of Tuberculosis Diagnostics in Children: 1. Proposed Clinical Case Definitions for Classification of Intrathoracic Tuberculosis Disease. Consensus From an Expert Panel 
The Journal of Infectious Diseases  2012;205(Suppl 2):S199-S208.
There is a critical need for improved diagnosis of tuberculosis in children, particularly in young children with intrathoracic disease as this represents the most common type of tuberculosis in children and the greatest diagnostic challenge. There is also a need for standardized clinical case definitions for the evaluation of diagnostics in prospective clinical research studies that include children in whom tuberculosis is suspected but not confirmed by culture of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. A panel representing a wide range of expertise and child tuberculosis research experience aimed to develop standardized clinical research case definitions for intrathoracic tuberculosis in children to enable harmonized evaluation of new tuberculosis diagnostic technologies in pediatric populations. Draft definitions and statements were proposed and circulated widely for feedback. An expert panel then considered each of the proposed definitions and statements relating to clinical definitions. Formal group consensus rules were established and consensus was reached for each statement. The definitions presented in this article are intended for use in clinical research to evaluate diagnostic assays and not for individual patient diagnosis or treatment decisions. A complementary article addresses methodological issues to consider for research of diagnostics in children with suspected tuberculosis.
doi:10.1093/infdis/jis008
PMCID: PMC3334506  PMID: 22448023
14.  The influence of stigma on HIV risk behavior among men who have sex with men in Chennai, India 
AIDS care  2012;24(11):1401-1406.
Stigma has been shown to increase vulnerability to HIV acquisition in many settings around the world. However, limited research has been conducted examining its role among men who have sex with men (MSM) in India, whose HIV prevalence is far greater than the general population. In 2009, 210 MSM in Chennai completed an interviewer-administered assessment, including questions about stigma, sexual-risk, demographics, and psychosocial variables. More than one fifth of the MSM reported unprotected anal sex (UAS) in the past three months. Logistic regression procedures were used to examine correlates of having experienced stigma. The 11-item stigma scale had high internal consistency reliability (Cronbach's alpha=0.99). Almost 2/5ths (39%) reported a high-level of experienced stigma (≥12 mean scale-score) in their lifetime, and the mean stigma scale score was 12 (SD=2.0). Significant correlates of having experienced prior stigma, after adjusting for age and educational attainment, included: identifying as a kothi (feminine acting/appearing and predominantly receptive in anal sex) compared to a panthi (masculine appearing, predominantly insertive) (AOR= 63.23; 95% CI: 15.92, 251.14; p<0.0001); being “out” about one's MSM behavior (AOR=5.63; 95% CI: 1.46, 21.73; p=0.01); having clinically significant depressive symptoms (AOR=2.68; 95% CI: 1.40, 5.12; p=0.003); and engaging in sex work in the prior 3 months (AOR=4.89; 95% CI: 2.51, 9.51; p<0.0001). These findings underscore the need to address psychosocial issues of Indian MSM. Unless issues such as stigma are addressed, effective HIV prevention interventions for this hidden population remain a challenge.
doi:10.1080/09540121.2012.672717
PMCID: PMC3634562  PMID: 22519945
men who have sex with men; MSM; depression; India; HIV; stigma
15.  UNSEEN AND UNHEARD: PREDICTORS OF SEXUAL RISK BEHAVIOR AND HIV INFECTION AMONG MEN WHO HAVE SEX WITH MEN IN CHENNAI, INDIA 
In India men who have sex with men (MSM) are stigmatized, understudied, and at high risk for HIV. Understanding the impact of psychosocial issues on HIV risk behavior and HIV infection can help shape culturally relevant HIV prevention interventions. Peer outreach workers recruited 210 MSM in Chennai who completed an interviewer-administered psychosocial assessment battery and underwent HIV testing and counseling. More than one fifth (46/210) reported unprotected anal intercourse in the past 3 months, 8% tested positive for HIV, and 26% had previously participated in an HIV prevention intervention. In a multivariable logistic-regression model controlling for age, MSM subpopulation (kothi, panthi, or double-decker), marital status, and religion, significant predictors of any unprotected anal intercourse were being less educated (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] = .54; p = .009), not having previously participated in an HIV prevention program (AOR = 3.75; p = .05), having clinically significant depression symptoms (AOR = 2.8; p = .02), and lower self-efficacy (AOR = .40; p < .0001). Significant predictors of testing positive for HIV infection were: being less educated (AOR = .53; .05) and not currently living with parent(s) (AOR = 3.71; p = .05). Given the prevalence of HIV among MSM, efforts to reach hidden subpopulations of MSM in India are still needed. Such programs for MSM in India may need to address culturally-relevant commonly co-occurring psychosocial problems to maximize chances of reducing risk for infection.
doi:10.1521/aeap.2009.21.4.372
PMCID: PMC3623672  PMID: 19670971
16.  Efficacy of a Six-Month versus a 36-Month Regimen for Prevention of Tuberculosis in HIV-Infected Persons in India: A Randomized Clinical Trial 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(12):e47400.
Background
The optimal duration of preventive therapy for tuberculosis (TB) among HIV-infected persons in TB-endemic countries is unknown.
Methods
An open-label randomized clinical trial was performed and analyzed for equivalence. Seven hundred and twelve HIV-infected, ART-naïve patients without active TB were randomized to receive either ethambutol 800 mg and isoniazid 300 mg daily for six-months (6EH) or isoniazid 300 mg daily for 36-months (36H). Drugs were dispensed fortnightly and adherence checked by home visits. Patients had chest radiograph, sputum smear and culture performed every six months, in addition to investigations if they developed symptoms. The primary endpoint was incident TB while secondary endpoints were all-cause mortality and adverse events. Survival analysis was performed on the modified intent to treat population (m-ITT) and rates compared.
Findings
Tuberculosis developed in 22 (6.4%) of 344 subjects in the 6EH arm and 13 (3.8%) of 339 subjects in the 36H arm with incidence rates of 2.4/100py (95%CI- 1.4–3.5) and 1.6/100py (95% CI-0.8–3.0) with an adjusted rate ratio (aIRR) of 1.6 (0.8–3.2). Among TST-positive subjects, the aIRR of 6EH was 1.7 (0.6–4.3) compared to 36H, p = 0.8. All-cause mortality and toxicity were similar in the two arms. Among 15 patients with confirmed TB, 4 isolates were resistant to isoniazid and 2 were multidrug-resistant.
Interpretation
Both regimens were similarly effective in preventing TB, when compared to historical incidence rates. However, there was a trend to lower TB incidence with 36H. There was no increase in isoniazid resistance compared to the expected rate in HIV-infected patients.
The trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT00351702.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0047400
PMCID: PMC3522661  PMID: 23251327
17.  Role of pharmacogenomics in the treatment of tuberculosis: a review 
Background:
Tuberculosis is one of the major public health problems worldwide. Modern antituberculous treatment can cure most patients; cure rates > 95% are achieved with standard short-course chemotherapy regimens containing isoniazid, rifampicin, pyrazinamide, and ethambutol among patients with drug-susceptible strains of tuberculosis; however, a small proportion do not respond to treatment or develop serious adverse events. Pharmacogenomic studies of drugs used in the treatment of tuberculosis could help us understand intersubject variations in treatment response. In this review, we compiled pharmacogenomic data on antituberculous drugs that were available from different settings that would give a better insight into the role of pharmacogenomics in the treatment of tuberculosis, thereby enhancing the efficacy and limiting the toxicity of existing antituberculosis medications.
Methods:
The PubMed database was searched from 1960 to the present using the keywords “tuberculosis”, “antituberculosis treatment”, “isoniazid”, “rifampicin”, “pyrazinamide”, “ethambutol”, “pharmacogenomics”, and “polymorphism”. Abstracts from meetings and review articles were included.
Conclusion:
Studies conducted in different settings suggest that pharmacogenomics plays a significant role in isoniazid metabolism, and impacts both treatment efficacy and frequency of adverse reactions. Single nucleotide polymorphisms influencing plasma rifampicin concentrations are also reported. No data are available regarding other first-line drugs, ie, ethambutol and pyrazinamide. There is a need to incorporate pharmacogenomics into clinical trials of tuberculosis in order to understand the factors impacting therapeutic success and occurrence of adverse drug effects.
doi:10.2147/PGPM.S15454
PMCID: PMC3513231  PMID: 23226065
tuberculosis; antituberculous treatment; pharmacogenomics; polymorphism; drug metabolism
18.  Factors influencing plasma nevirapine levels: a study in HIV-infected children on generic antiretroviral treatment in India 
Background
Nevirapine is an important component of paediatric combination HIV therapy. Adequate drug exposure is necessary in order to achieve long-lasting viral suppression.
Objectives
To study the influence of age, drug dose and formulation type, nutritional status and CYP2B6 516G>T polymorphism on blood concentrations of nevirapine in children treated with generic antiretroviral drugs.
Methods
A multicentre study was conducted at four sites in India. HIV-infected children receiving generic nevirapine-based fixed-dose combinations were recruited. Trough and 2 h nevirapine plasma concentrations were determined by HPLC. Characterization of the CYP2B6 gene polymorphism was performed using direct sequencing. Clinical and nutritional status was recorded. Groups were compared using the Mann–Whitney U-test and multivariable logistic regression analysis was performed to identify factors contributing to low drug levels.
Results
Ninety-four children of median age 78 months were studied; 60% were undernourished or stunted. Stunted children had a significantly lower 2 h nevirapine concentration compared with non-stunted children (P < 0.05); there were no significant differences in trough concentrations between different nutritional groups. Nevirapine levels were significantly higher in children with TT compared with GG and GT CYP2B6 genotypes (P < 0.01). Children ≤3 years had a 3.2 (95% confidence interval 1.07–9.45) times higher risk of having sub-therapeutic nevirapine concentrations.
Conclusions
Nevirapine blood concentrations are affected by many factors, most notably age ≤3 years; a combination of young age, stunting and CYP2B6 GG or GT genotype could potentially result in sub-therapeutic nevirapine concentrations. Dosing recommendations for children should be reviewed in the light of these findings.
doi:10.1093/jac/dkr075
PMCID: PMC3143437  PMID: 21393201
nutritional status; CYP2B6 516G > T polymorphism; pharmacokinetics
19.  The Cost-Effectiveness of Tuberculosis Preventive Therapy for HIV-Infected Individuals in Southern India: A Trial-Based Analysis 
PLoS ONE  2012;7(4):e36001.
Background
Regimens for isoniazid-based preventive therapy (IPT) for tuberculosis (TB) in HIV-infected individuals have not been widely adopted given concerns regarding efficacy, adherence and drug resistance. Further, the cost-effectiveness of IPT has not been studied in India.
Methods
We used an HIV/TB model to project TB incidence, life expectancy, cost and incremental cost-effectiveness of six months of isoniazid plus ethambutol (6EH), thirty-six months of isoniazid (36H) and no IPT for HIV-infected patients in India. Model input parameters included a median CD4 count of 324 cells/mm3, and a rate ratio of developing TB of 0.35 for 6EH and 0.22 for 36H at three years as compared to no IPT. Results of 6EH and 36H were also compared to six months of isoniazid (6H), three months of isoniazid plus rifampin (3RH) and three months of isoniazid plus rifapentine (3RPTH).
Results
Projected TB incidence decreased in the 6EH and 36H regimens by 51% and 62% respectively at three-year follow-up compared to no IPT. Without IPT, projected life expectancy was 136.1 months at a lifetime per person cost of $5,630. 6EH increased life expectancy by 0.8 months at an additional per person cost of $100 (incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER) of $1,490/year of life saved (YLS)). 36H further increased life expectancy by 0.2 months with an additional per person cost of $55 (ICER of $3,120/YLS). The projected clinical impact of 6EH was comparable to 6H and 3RH; however when compared to these other options, 6EH was no longer cost-effective given the high cost of ethambutol. Results were sensitive to baseline CD4 count and adherence.
Conclusions
Three, six and thirty-six-month regimens of isoniazid-based therapy are effective in preventing TB. Three months of isoniazid plus rifampin and six-months of isoniazid are similarly cost-effective in India, and should be considered part of HIV care.
doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0036001
PMCID: PMC3340407  PMID: 22558301
20.  Diagnosis & treatment of tuberculosis in HIV co-infected patients 
Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) associated tuberculosis (TB) remains a major global public health challenge, with an estimated 1.4 million patients worldwide. Co-infection with HIV leads to challenges in both the diagnosis and treatment of tuberculosis. Further, there has been an increase in rates of drug resistant tuberculosis, including multi-drug (MDR-TB) and extensively drug resistant TB (XDRTB), which are difficult to treat and contribute to increased mortality. Because of the poor performance of sputum smear microscopy in HIV-infected patients, newer diagnostic tests are urgently required that are not only sensitive and specific but easy to use in remote and resource-constrained settings. The treatment of co-infected patients requires antituberculosis and antiretroviral drugs to be administered concomitantly; challenges include pill burden and patient compliance, drug interactions, overlapping toxic effects, and immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome. Also important questions about the duration and schedule of anti-TB drug regimens and timing of antiretroviral therapy remain unanswered. From a programmatic point of view, screening of all HIV-infected persons for TB and vice-versa requires good co-ordination and communication between the TB and AIDS control programmes. Linkage of co-infected patients to antiretroviral treatment centres is critical if early mortality is to be prevented. We present here an overview of existing diagnostic strategies, new tests in the pipeline and recommendations for treatment of patients with HIV-TB dual infection.
doi:10.4103/0971-5916.92630
PMCID: PMC3284094  PMID: 22310818
Co-infection; diagnosis; drug resistance; IRIS; treatment; tuberculosis
21.  HIV in Indian MSM: Reasons for a concentrated epidemic & strategies for prevention 
Men who have sex with men (MSM) in India are disproportionately likely to be HIV-infected, and face distinct psychosocial challenges. Understanding the unique socio-cultural issues of MSM in India and how they relate to HIV risk could maximize the utility of future prevention efforts. This review discusses: (i) the importance of addressing co-occurring mental health issues, such as depression, which may interfere with MSM's ability to benefit from traditional risk reduction counselling, (ii) reducing HIV-related stigma among health providers, policymakers and the lay public, and (iii) the role for non-governmental organizations that work with the community to play in providing culturally relevant HIV prevention programmes for MSM.
doi:10.4103/0971-5916.92637
PMCID: PMC3284100  PMID: 22310824
HIV; India; men who have sex with men; MSM; mental health; stigma
22.  Dyslipidemia among HIV-infected Patients with Tuberculosis Taking Once-daily Nonnucleoside Reverse-Transcriptase Inhibitor–Based Antiretroviral Therapy in India 
HIV-infected patients with tuberculosis who initiate nonnucleoside reverse-transcriptase-based anti-retroviral treatment in combination with rifampicin-based antituberculosis treatment demonstrate increases in total cholesterol, low-density cholesterol, and high-density cholesterol levels but no change in blood glucose level after 1 year. Cholesterol increases were more frequent among patients receiving efavirenz.
Background. Our aim was to study the incidence and pattern of dyslipidemia among human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–infected patients with tuberculosis (TB) who received once-daily antiretroviral therapy (ART).
Methods. Antiretroviral-naive HIV-infected patients with TB were recruited to a trial of once-daily nonnucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitor (NNRTI)–based ART and treated with rifampicin-based thrice-weekly antituberculosis treatment (ATT); participants were randomized to receive didanosine (250/400 mg) and lamivudine (300 mg) with either efavirenz (600 mg) or nevirapine (400 mg) once-daily after an intensive phase of ATT. Fasting triglyceride (TG) level, total cholesterol (TC) level, low-density cholesterol (LDL-c) level and high-density cholesterol (HDL-c) level were measured at baseline and at 6 and 12 months. Lipid levels at 6 and 12 months were compared with baseline values with use of repeated measures analyses. McNemar test was used to compare the proportion of patients with lipid abnormality at baseline versus at 12 months, and χ2 test was used to compare between the 2 groups.
Results. Of 168 patients (79% men; mean age, 36 years; mean weight, 42 kg; median CD4+ cell count, 93 cells/mm3), 104 received efavirenz-based ART, and 64 received nevirapine-based ART. After 6 months, TC levels increased by 49 mg/dL, LDL-c levels by 30 mg/dL, and HDL-c levels increased by 18 mg/dL (P < .001 for all). At baseline and at 12 months, TC was >200 mg/dL for 1% and 26% of patients, respectively; LDL-c level was >130 mg/dL for 3% and 23%, respectively; HDL-c level was <40 mg/dL for 91% and 23%, respectively; and blood glucose level was >110 mg/dL for 14% and 13%, respectively. TC level >200 mg/dL was more common among patients who received efavirenz than among those who received nevirapine (32% vs 16%; P = .04).
Conclusions. HIV-infected patients with TB who initiate NNRTI-based ART undergo complex changes in lipid profile, highlighting the importance of screening and treating other cardiovascular disease risk factors in this population.
doi:10.1093/cid/ciq195
PMCID: PMC3060904  PMID: 21252141
23.  Dose Adjustment of the Nonnucleoside Reverse Transcriptase Inhibitors (NNRTIs) during Concurrent Rifampicin-Containing Tuberculosis Therapy: One Size does not Fit All 
Importance of the field
HIV/TB coinfection is common and associated with high mortality. Simultaneous highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) during TB treatment is associated with substantial survival benefit but drug-drug interactions complicate NNRTI dosing.
Areas covered in this review
We reviewed the impact of rifampicin-containing TB therapy on the NNRTIs pharmacokinetics and clinical outcome. Pub Med database was searched from 1966 to July 2009, using the terms efavirenz, rifampicin, nevirapine, pharmacokinetics, pharmacogenetics, HIV, TB, CYP2B6, CYP3A4 and metabolism. References from identified articles and abstracts from meetings were also reviewed.
What the reader will gain
A comprehensive review of the literature on this subject including pharmacokinetic and clinical studies. Most studies were small, observational or underpowered to detect the true effect of rifampicin on NNRTI-based therapy. None of the studies controlled for genetic factors and there was limited data on children.
Take home message
There was insufficient data to make definitive recommendations about dose adjustment of the NNRTIs during rifampin-containing therapy. Current data suggest that standard dose of efavirenz or nevirapine is adequate in most HIV/TB co-infected adults. However, more research is needed in pediatric populations as well as to define role of drug-gene interactions.
doi:10.1517/17425250903393752
PMCID: PMC2939445  PMID: 19968575
Drug interactions; Efavirenz; HIV; Nevirapine; Rifampicin; Tuberculosis
24.  HIV Prevention Interventions in Chennai, India: Are Men Who Have Sex with Men Being Reached? 
AIDS Patient Care and STDs  2009;23(11):981-986.
Abstract
India has the greatest number of HIV infections in Asia and the third highest total number of infected persons globally. Men who have sex with men (MSM) are considered by the Government of India's National AIDS Control Organization (NACO) a “core risk group” for HIV in need of HIV prevention efforts. However there is a dearth of information on the frequency of participation in HIV prevention interventions and subsequent HIV risk and other correlates among MSM in India. Recruited through peer outreach workers, word of mouth and snowball sampling techniques, 210 MSM in Chennai completed an interviewer-administered assessment, including questions about participating in any HIV prevention interventions in the past year, sexual risk taking, demographics, MSM identities, and other psychosocial variables. Bivariate and multivariable logistic regression procedures were used to examine behavioral and demographic correlates with HIV prevention intervention participation. More than a quarter (26%) of the sample reported participating in an HIV prevention intervention in the year prior to study participation. Participants who reported engaging in unprotected anal sex (UAS; odds ratio [OR] = 0.28; p = 0.01) in the 3 months prior to study enrollment were less likely to have participated in an HIV prevention program in the past year. MSM who were older (OR = 1.04; p = 0.05), kothis (feminine acting/appearing and predominantly receptive partners in anal sex) compared to panthis (masculine appearing, predominantly insertive partners; OR = 5.52, p = 0.0004), those with higher educational attainment (OR = 1.48, p = 0.01), being “out” about having sex with other men (OR = 4.03, p = 0.0001), and MSM who reported ever having been paid in exchange for sex (OR = 2.92, p = 0.001) were more likely to have reported participation in an HIV prevention intervention in the preceding year. In a multivariable model, MSM reporting UAS in the prior 3 months were less likely to have participated in an HIV prevention intervention (AOR = 0.34, p = 0.04). MSM who were older (AOR = 1.05, p = 0.05), those with higher educational attainment (AOR = 1.92, p = 0.0009), and MSM who were “out” about having sex with other men (AOR = 2.71, p = 0.04) were more likely to have reported participating in an HIV prevention program. Findings suggest that exposure to HIV prevention interventions may be protective against engaging in UAS for some MSM in India. Understanding predictors of participation in an HIV prevention intervention is helpful for identifying Indian MSM who might have had no exposure to HIV prevention information and skills building, hence allowing researchers and prevention workers to focus efforts on individuals at greatest need.
doi:10.1089/apc.2009.0092
PMCID: PMC2859779  PMID: 19821722
25.  Emergence of drug resistant mutations after single dose nevirapine exposure in HIV-1 infected pregnant women in south India 
Background & objectives:
Resistance to nevirapine (NVP) has been described with single dose preventive regimens in other populations. Our aim was to study the pattern and prevalence of HIV drug resistance (DR) at baseline (during pregnancy) and after delivery among antenatal women exposed to single dose NVP for prevention of parent to child transmission (PPTCT).
Methods:
HIV-infected, ART-naive primigravidae between 18-25 years of age, attending government antenatal clinics in Chennai, Vellore or Madurai were recruited. Drug resistance testing was carried out during pregnancy and after Sd-NVP treatment (one month after delivery) by Viroseq sequencing. HIV-1 testing by DNA PCR was done in newborns at 30 days.
Results:
Thirty one women were enrolled but only twenty six plasma specimens were analyzable (24 paired and two postnatal only). No major mutations were observed in any drug class at baseline though many polymorphisms were observed in both the reverse transcriptase and protease genes. Mutations to non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTI) were observed post-delivery in 33 per cent of women who were treated with Sd-NVP. None of the infants were HIV-positive.
Interpretation & conclusions:
Among pregnant ART-naïve women, baseline HIV drug resistance was not observed. A high rate of development of NNRTI class resistance among women treated with single-dose NVP was observed. Our results emphasize the need to implement more effective PPTCT regimens, minimizing emergence of drug resistance and thereby preserving long-term treatment options for HIV-infected women in India.
PMCID: PMC3028950  PMID: 21149999
Drug resistance; HIV; nevirapine; pregnancy

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