NeuroHIV

HEALTH INFORMATION

Investigating links between HIV and dementia

WHAT WE KNOW

There is a growing concern that long-term HIV infection and aging may increase the risk of developing degenerative brain diseases similar to Alzheimer’s disease.

We are conducting a study to better understand whether long-term HIV infection increases the risk of developing difficulties with memory and concentration in HIV+ individuals aged 45 years or older.

Because of the success of antiretroviral therapy, many HIV+ individuals are now reaching their 50s and 60s. There has been some suggestion that long-term HIV infection may be associated with developing degenerative brain diseases such as dementia.

In conjunction with St Vincent’s Hospital and the University of New South Wales, NeuRA’s Dr Lucette Cyscique and Prof Lindy Rae are conducting a study to estimate the prevalence of memory and concentration difficulties in older individuals with long-term HIV infection.

We are also determining the means by which  (if any) long-term HIV infection contributes to the incidence of an illness like Alzheimer’s disease.

OUR LATEST RESEARCH

Strategic timing of antiretroviral treatment neurology sub-study

The aim of the Strategic Timing of AntiRetroviral Treatment (START) Neurology trial, is to investigate whether immediate initiation of antiretroviral treatment (ART) is superior to deferral of ART until the CD4+ declines below 350 cells/mm3 on neuropsychological functions.

Brain health now for HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders

This study is focused on how to determine the prevalence and incidence of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders in Canada and to assess cognitive rehabilitation/training strategies.

Binge drinking and the adolescent brain

This study is examining effects of binge alcohol consumption in 16-17 year olds using questionnaires, magnetic resonance imaging and cognitive testing. It aims to determine whether binge consumption of alcohol is impacting adolescent brain and cognitive development.

Cross-disciplinary assessment of chronic HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder

This study focuses on HIV-associated neurocognitive disorder mechanisms in chronic and virally suppressed HIV infection as well as in patients who are aging and are at higer risks of cardiovascular diseases.

Cross-culturally valid assessment of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders

This project aims to develop a screening and standard neuropsychological battery that is cross-culturally valid for assessment of neurocognitive functions in HIV infection, in culturally and linguistically diverse Australians

CNS reservoirs in NeuroHIV

This project is dedicated to the identification and quantification of HIV reservoirs biomarkers in the Central Nervous System.

What else is happening in NeuroHIV research at NeuRA?

FEEL THE BUZZ IN THE AIR? US TOO.

The cold case of schizophrenia - broken wide open!

‘It is like they were miraculously healed!’’ Schizophrenia is diagnosed by clinical observation of behaviour and speech. This is why NeuRA researchers are working hard to understand the biological basis of the illness. Through hours of work and in collaboration with doctors and scientists here and around the world, NeuRA has made an amazing breakthrough. For the first time, researchers have discovered the presence of antibodies in the brains of people who lived with schizophrenia. Having found these antibodies, it has led NeuRA researchers to ask two questions. What are they doing there? What should we do about the antibodies– help or remove them? This is a key breakthrough. Imagine if we are treating schizophrenia all wrong! It is early days, but can you imagine the treatment implications if we’ve identified a new biological basis for the disease? It could completely change the way schizophrenia is managed, creating new treatments that will protect the brain. More than this, could we be on the verge of discovering a ‘curable’ form of schizophrenia? How you can help We are so grateful for your loyal support of schizophrenia research in Australia, and today I ask if you will consider a gift today. Or, to provide greater confidence, consider becoming a Discovery Partner by making a monthly commitment. We believe there is great potential to explore these findings. Will you help move today’s breakthrough into tomorrow’s cure? To read more about this breakthrough, click ‘read the full story’ below. You are also invited to read ‘Beth’s story’, whose sweet son Marcus lived with schizophrenia, by clicking here.
APPEAL