“Epidemics historically have tended to kill the very young and the very old, but AIDS is different: Those ages 20 to 40 are most affected, which means that so far over 12 million African children have been orphaned because of AIDS.” -Marvin Olasky
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome (AIDS) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) first started to gain awareness in the beginning of the 1980’s as being an incurable epidemic. Since these discoveries, ongoing clinical trials have been administered by biomedical research scientists aimed towards generating a vaccine. Due to many active global research campaigns the search for an antivirus cure for the HIV/AIDS continues to be sought after. It takes large amounts of time and effort along with sizeable costs to perform research studies for AIDS/HIV. Gratefully, due to major funding from large sponsors such as governmental partners and philanthropists (not pharmaceutical companies), biomedical scientists are able to gain headway in the pursuit to find a solution for the disease.
Uganda, first hit by AIDS in 1988, is now the front line in our war against this devastating disease: their primary weapon―research into finding a vaccine. At this time Africa holds 67% of the total global AIDS population, making it imperative that strides to find a cure take place within the heart of this region.
For patients who have developed HIV, highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) approaches can be utilized. Patients undergoing HAART are given several drugs, sometimes taken all at once, to help treat the retrovirus. Placebo’s along with treatments such as HAART therapy will be administered to patients to provide support in tracking treatment results. These techniques, accompanied with other procedures have positively proven to prolong and improve the quality of living for patients carrying the HIV infection.
Systematic reporting of individual patients through barcodes and data basing is absolutely imperative through the duration of research. Before a clinical trial can be administered, years of research and data reporting is required to evaluate safety and effectiveness of possible drugs on animal models before approval is granted to proceed on human subjects.
Scientists are finding it difficult to analyze the exact effects of a vaccine on human subjects before going to clinical trial stages because animals are immune to HIV. Rhesus macaques carry a similar hybrid virus that is closely related to HIV called Simian Immunodeficiency Virus (SIV), commonly known as African Green Monkey Virus. Biomedical scientists test vaccine contenders on animal models carrying SIV and offer their best hypothesis for results on humans.
Research is also underway to explore what specifically makes animals immune to HIV. If scientists can better understand animals’ immunity to HIV they may be able to develop vaccines that mimic this immunity for humans. Analysis results are kept on file of cellular response of T cells and measurements of antibody reactions. Using the results, researchers must distinguish whether a vaccine contender is a viral vector, DNA based vaccine or protein subunit.
Further in progress, investigations focus on inducing antibodies to fight HIV by blocking the virus’ ability to attach itself to targeted cells―otherwise known as broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs). Such bNAbs have been found in human carriers of HIV that are developing resistance capabilities to the virus. Several new bNAbs containing diverse amounts of effectiveness are being found and isolated for research; however, it may be several years of extensive testing before bNAbs are available for clinical testing.
Electronic Imaging Materials, Inc. is proud to play a part in this vital AIDS research by providing unique cryogenic barcode labels that biomedical scientists require to perform immunogenicity studies. Our durable CryoLabel® materials are reliable and ideal for handling chemicals, solvents, cryogenic temperatures (such as liquid nitrogen applications) and moisture conditions―all of which are found in laboratories researching AIDS/HIV.
Our white and clear CryoLabel® products are engineered for firm adhesion to microarray plates and vials of various sizes. The most popular types of CryoLabel® come blank in rolls for thermal transfer printing―a technology that assures printed information will withstand laboratory applications with no damage or loss of detail. We also have durable, sheet-form CryoLabel® for laser printing. If needed, we can print your labels for your and ship them ready to apply.
To help facilities like those in Uganda, we also offer complete QuickStart™ Label Printing Systems that efficiently integrate with existing database programs. Our easy-to-use barcode printing packages include barcode software, thermal printers, blank labels, and specially-matched printing ribbons as well as complete instructions and printing templates.
ElM would like to thank the research organizations that put their own lives at risk while attempting to better the lives of others. For all the end of the disease may not be in our immediate future, progress is underway and solutions are still being actively pursued. Thanks to screening and preventive measures, along with this on-going research, fewer people are living with HIV in Uganda. We want to commend these remarkable research heroes!