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There is a vaccine for TB, the BCG (bacille Calmette-Guerin); however, it has some limitations because immunocompromised people cannot receive it. The BCG is nearly a century old, and there is a global effort to find a new, updated version. The Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation (DTHF), along with the South African Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative (SATVI) are trialing a few different variations of vaccines in the search for increased efficacy.

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Vaccines protect us from serious illnesses like mumps, polio and rubella. These diseases, which used to be harmful, are today are no longer a threat in situations where child vaccinations are routine. However, an HIV vaccine remains elusive. The Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation (DTHF) is conducting HIV vaccine trials in the hope that one day we will have an effective HIV vaccine to prevent HIV infection.

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Women in blue | Tyler Golato DTHF
To commemorate World Immunisation Week, we are sharing some of our research in HIV immunity trials. The Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation (DTHF) is testing an infusion of HIV antibodies that are administered intravenously for HIV-negative people. The drip has a similar function to a vaccine; it introduces HIV-fighting antibodies to the patient’s immune system. If successful, this drip could prevent many new incidences of HIV in high-risk communities.

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Polio vaccine | Unicef Guinea
The Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation (DHTF) has been researching HIV and providing outreach around Cape Town for over a decade. This includes research on the elusive HIV vaccine. This World Immunization Week 2017, we want to share some of the history of immunization, what research is ongoing right now and where vaccines will be in the future.

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This World TB Day 2017 theme is: Unite to End TB; Leave no one behind. Many people infected with TB find themselves discriminated against because of their illness. Others are scared to seek treatment because they fear intolerance, whether that be because of their race, gender, religion or their status as migrants and refugees. We can only end TB if these patients can access treatment.

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A collection of poems around the theme 'The power of one' written by Cape Town Students. They discuss issues around HIV, empowerment and inner-strength.

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Be Bold for Change



8 March is International Womens Day and in 2017 the chosen theme is: Be Bold for Change. Women’s Day can be viewed as a day to celebrate all things that women have contributed and achieved. However, historically Women’s Day is also a day put aside to stand up and challenge social and political norms that still keep women oppressed. It is a day to acknowledge that the fight for equality and fair treatment is not over; there are still many miles to go.

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My HIV Valentine



Valentines Day
Valentine’s Day, as legend has it, originated when St Valentine took it upon himself to secretly help couples tie the knot when marriage was illegal under Roman law. The Romans may have killed St Valentine when they found out, but his dedication to upholding the right to love and be loved in spite of his own personal safety is remembered and celebrated today. HIV/AIDS is a highly stigmatized and feared disease because it strikes in many the fear of death. Modern medicine has created its own St Valentine through anti-retroviral therapy (ART) and given us all the chance to live and love safely in the face of potential death.



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Engage the Epidemic



If you were born any time after the 90’s you have grown up hearing this, year in, year out. End AIDS, wear a condom, abstain. Either not enough of us are following this, or simply this is only part of the solution and we need to find the rest of it. What we really need this year is Engagement. We need to pick up this disease, turn it over, and just as a HIV scientist works with the virus to see how it infiltrates immune cells, we need to work out how it infiltrates our lives. We need to Engage this Epidemic.

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