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  1. Jung IY, Rupasinghe D, Woolley I, O'Connor CC, Giles M, Azwa RI, et al.
    J Int AIDS Soc, 2019 Jan;22(1):e25219.
    PMID: 30615271 DOI: 10.1002/jia2.25219
    INTRODUCTION: AIDS-related deaths in people living with HIV/AIDS have been decreasing in number since the introduction of combination antiretroviral treatment (cART). However, data on recent causes of death in the Asia-Pacific region are limited. Hence, we analysed and compared AIDS-related and non-AIDS-related mortality in high- and low-income settings in the region.

    METHODS: Patients from the TREAT Asia HIV Observational Database (TAHOD) and Australian HIV Observational Database (AHOD) receiving cART between 1999 and 2017 were included. Causes of death verification were based on review of the standardized Cause of Death (CoDe) form designed by the D:A:D group. Cohorts were grouped as AHOD (all high-income sites), TAHOD-high (high/upper-middle income countries) and TAHOD-low (lower-middle income countries). TAHOD sites were split into high/upper-middle income and lower-middle income country settings based on World Bank classifications. Competing risk regression was used to analyse factors associated with AIDS and non-AIDS-related mortality.

    RESULTS: Of 10,386 patients, 522 died; 187 from AIDS-related and 335 from non-AIDS-related causes. The overall incidence rate of deaths during follow-up was 0.28 per 100 person-years (/100 PYS) for AIDS and 0.51/100 PYS for non-AIDS. Analysis indicated that the incidence rate of non-AIDS mortality decreased from 0.78/100 PYS to 0.37/100 PYS from year groups 2003 to 2007 to 2013 to 2017 (p Asia-Pacific region. There is a greater risk for non-AIDS-associated deaths in the AHOD cohort compared to lower-middle income settings in TAHOD.

  2. Jiamsakul A, Kiertiburanakul S, Ng OT, Chaiwarith R, Wong W, Ditangco R, et al.
    HIV Med., 2019 Apr 12.
    PMID: 30980495 DOI: 10.1111/hiv.12734
    OBJECTIVES: With earlier antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation, time spent in HIV care is expected to increase. We aimed to investigate loss to follow-up (LTFU) in Asian patients who remained in care 5 years after ART initiation.

    METHODS: Long-term LTFU was defined as LTFU occurring after 5 years on ART. LTFU was defined as (1) patients not seen in the previous 12 months; and (2) patients not seen in the previous 6 months. Factors associated with LTFU were analysed using competing risk regression.

    RESULTS: Under the 12-month definition, the LTFU rate was 2.0 per 100 person-years (PY) [95% confidence interval (CI) 1.8-2.2 among 4889 patients included in the study. LTFU was associated with age > 50 years [sub-hazard ratio (SHR) 1.64; 95% CI 1.17-2.31] compared with 31-40 years, viral load ≥ 1000 copies/mL (SHR 1.86; 95% CI 1.16-2.97) compared with viral load < 1000 copies/mL, and hepatitis C coinfection (SHR 1.48; 95% CI 1.06-2.05). LTFU was less likely to occur in females, in individuals with higher CD4 counts, in those with self-reported adherence ≥ 95%, and in those living in high-income countries. The 6-month LTFU definition produced an incidence rate of 3.2 per 100 PY (95% CI 2.9-3.4 and had similar associations but with greater risks of LTFU for ART initiation in later years (2006-2009: SHR 2.38; 95% CI 1.93-2.94; and 2010-2011: SHR 4.26; 95% CI 3.17-5.73) compared with 2003-2005.

    CONCLUSIONS: The long-term LTFU rate in our cohort was low, with older age being associated with LTFU. The increased risk of LTFU with later years of ART initiation in the 6-month analysis, but not the 12-month analysis, implies that there was a possible move towards longer HIV clinic scheduling in Asia.

  3. Aurpibul L, Kariminia A, Vibol U, Fong MS, Le ON, Hansudewechakul R, et al.
    Pediatr. Infect. Dis. J., 2018 08;37(8):788-793.
    PMID: 29846357 DOI: 10.1097/INF.0000000000001901
    BACKGROUND: Hepatitis B (HBV)-HIV coinfection is associated with liver inflammation, which can progress to liver fibrosis/cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. We determined HBV seroprevalence in children and adolescents participating in the TREAT Asia Pediatric HIV Observational Database.

    METHODS: A multisite cross-sectional study was conducted in HIV-infected patients currently <25 years old receiving antiretroviral treatment (ART) who had HBV surface antigen (HBsAg), or HBV surface antibody (anti-HBs) or HBV core antibody (anti-HBc) tested during 2012-2013. HBV coinfection was defined as having either a positive HBsAg test or being anti-HBc positive and anti-HBs negative, reflective of past HBV infection. HBV seroprotection was defined as having a positive anti-HBs test.

    RESULTS: A total of 3380 patients from 6 countries (Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia, Indonesia and India) were included. The current median (interquartile range) age was 11.2 (7.8-15.1) years. Of the 2755 patients (81.5%) with HBsAg testing, 130 (4.7%) were positive. Of 1558 (46%) with anti-HBc testing, 77 (4.9%) were positive. Thirteen of 1037 patients with all 3 tests were anti-HBc positive and HBsAg and anti-HBs negative. One child was positive for anti-HBc and negative for anti-HBs but did not have HBsAg tested. The prevalence of HBV coinfection was 144/2759 (5.2%) (95% confidence interval: 4.4-6.1). Of 1093 patients (32%) with anti-HBs testing, 257 (23.5%; confidence interval: 21.0-26.0) had positive tests representing HBV seroprotection.

    CONCLUSIONS: The estimated prevalence of HBV coinfection in this cohort of Asian HIV-infected children and adolescents on ART was 5.2%. The majority of children and adolescents tested in this cohort (76.5%) did not have protective HBV antibody. The finding supports HBV screening of HIV-infected children and adolescents to guide revaccination, the use of ART with anti-HBV activity and future monitoring.

  4. Bijker R, Jiamsakul A, Uy E, Kumarasamy N, Ditango R, Chaiwarith R, et al.
    HIV Med., 2019 Mar;20(3):183-191.
    PMID: 30620108 DOI: 10.1111/hiv.12687
    OBJECTIVES: With aging of the HIV-positive population, cardiovascular disease (CVD) increasingly contributes to morbidity and mortality. We investigated CVD-related and other causes of death (CODs) and factors associated with CVD in a multi-country Asian HIV-positive cohort.

    METHODS: Patient data from 2003-2017 were obtained from the Therapeutics, Research, Education and AIDS Training in Asia (TREAT Asia) HIV Observational Database (TAHOD). We included patients on antiretroviral therapy (ART) with > 1 day of follow-up. Cumulative incidences were plotted for CVD-related, AIDS-related, non-AIDS-related, and unknown CODs, and any CVD (i.e. fatal and nonfatal). Competing risk regression was used to assess risk factors of any CVD.

    RESULTS: Of 8069 patients with a median follow-up of 7.3 years [interquartile range (IQR) 4.4-10.7 years], 378 patients died [incidence rate (IR) 6.2 per 1000 person-years (PY)], and this total included 22 CVD-related deaths (IR 0.36 per 1000 PY). Factors significantly associated with any CVD event (IR 2.2 per 1000 PY) were older age [sub-hazard ratio (sHR) 2.21; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.36-3.58 for age 41-50 years; sHR 5.52; 95% CI 3.43-8.91 for ≥ 51 years, compared with < 40 years], high blood pressure (sHR 1.62; 95% CI 1.04-2.52), high total cholesterol (sHR 1.89; 95% CI 1.27-2.82), high triglycerides (sHR 1.55; 95% CI 1.02-2.37) and high body mass index (BMI) (sHR 1.66; 95% CI 1.12-2.46). CVD crude IRs were lower in the later ART initiation period and in lower middle- and upper middle-income countries.

    CONCLUSIONS: The development of fatal and nonfatal CVD events in our cohort was associated with older age, and treatable risk factors such as high blood pressure, triglycerides, total cholesterol and BMI. Lower CVD event rates in middle-income countries may indicate under-diagnosis of CVD in Asian-Pacific resource-limited settings.

  5. Bartlett AW, Mohamed TJ, Sudjaritruk T, Kurniati N, Nallusamy R, Hansudewechakul R, et al.
    Pediatr. Infect. Dis. J., 2019 Mar;38(3):287-292.
    PMID: 30281549 DOI: 10.1097/INF.0000000000002208
    BACKGROUND: Perinatally HIV-infected adolescents (PHIVA) are exposed to a chronic systemic infection and long-term antiretroviral therapy (ART), leaving them susceptible to morbidities associated with inflammation, immunodeficiency and drug toxicity.

    METHODS: Data collected 2001 to 2016 from PHIVA 10-19 years of age within a regional Asian cohort were analyzed using competing risk time-to-event and Poisson regression analyses to describe the nature and incidence of morbidity events and hospitalizations and identify factors associated with disease-related, treatment-related and overall morbidity. Morbidity was defined according to World Health Organization clinical staging criteria and U.S. National Institutes of Health Division of AIDS criteria.

    RESULTS: A total 3,448 PHIVA contributed 17,778 person-years. Median age at HIV diagnosis was 5.5 years, and ART initiation was 6.9 years. There were 2,562 morbidity events and 307 hospitalizations. Cumulative incidence for any morbidity was 51.7%, and hospitalization was 10.0%. Early adolescence was dominated by disease-related infectious morbidity, with a trend toward noninfectious and treatment-related morbidity in later adolescence. Higher overall morbidity rates were associated with a CD4 count <350 cells/µL, HIV viral load ≥10,000 copies/mL and experiencing prior morbidity at age <10 years. Lower overall morbidity rates were found for those 15-19 years of age compared with 10-14 years and those who initiated ART at age 5-9 years compared with <5 or ≥10 years.

    CONCLUSIONS: Half of our PHIVA cohort experienced a morbidity event, with a trend from disease-related infectious events to treatment-related and noninfectious events as PHIVA age. ART initiation to prevent immune system damage, optimize virologic control and minimize childhood morbidity are key to limiting adolescent morbidity.
  6. Sudjaritruk T, Boettiger DC, Nguyen LV, Mohamed TJ, Wati DK, Bunupuradah T, et al.
    J Int AIDS Soc, 2019 Jun;22(6):e25312.
    PMID: 31179641 DOI: 10.1002/jia2.25312
    INTRODUCTION: Recommendations on the optimal frequency of plasma viral load (pVL) monitoring in children living with HIV (CLWH) who are stable on combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) are inconsistent. This study aimed to determine the impact of annual versus semi-annual pVL monitoring on treatment outcomes in Asian CLWH.

    METHODS: Data on children with perinatally acquired HIV aged <18 years on first-line, non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor-based cART with viral suppression (two consecutive pVL <400 copies/mL over a six-month period) were included from a regional cohort study; those exposed to prior mono- or dual antiretroviral treatment were excluded. Frequency of pVL monitoring was determined at the site-level based on the median rate of pVL measurement: annual 0.75 to 1.5, and semi-annual >1.5 tests/patient/year. Treatment failure was defined as virologic failure (two consecutive pVL >1000 copies/mL), change of antiretroviral drug class, or death. Baseline was the date of the second consecutive pVL <400 copies/mL. Competing risk regression models were used to identify predictors of treatment failure.

    RESULTS: During January 2008 to March 2015, there were 1220 eligible children from 10 sites that performed at least annual pVL monitoring, 1042 (85%) and 178 (15%) were from sites performing annual (n = 6) and semi-annual pVL monitoring (n = 4) respectively. Pre-cART, 675 children (55%) had World Health Organization clinical stage 3 or 4, the median nadir CD4 percentage was 9%, and the median pVL was 5.2 log10 copies/mL. At baseline, the median age was 9.2 years, 64% were on nevirapine-based regimens, the median cART duration was 1.6 years, and the median CD4 percentage was 26%. Over the follow-up period, 258 (25%) CLWH with annual and 40 (23%) with semi-annual pVL monitoring developed treatment failure, corresponding to incidence rates of 5.4 (95% CI: 4.8 to 6.1) and 4.3 (95% CI: 3.1 to 5.8) per 100 patient-years of follow-up respectively (p = 0.27). In multivariable analyses, the frequency of pVL monitoring was not associated with treatment failure (adjusted hazard ratio: 1.12; 95% CI: 0.80 to 1.59).

    CONCLUSIONS: Annual compared to semi-annual pVL monitoring was not associated with an increased risk of treatment failure in our cohort of virally suppressed children with perinatally acquired HIV on first-line NNRTI-based cART.

  7. Prasitsuebsai W, Sethaputra C, Lumbiganon P, Hansudewechakul R, Chokephaibulkit K, Truong KH, et al.
    AIDS Care, 2018 06;30(6):727-733.
    PMID: 29336591 DOI: 10.1080/09540121.2018.1425363
    We studied behavioral risks among HIV-infected and uninfected adolescents using an audio computer-assisted self-interview. A prospective cohort study was initiated between 2013 and 2014 in Malaysia, Thailand, and Vietnam. HIV-infected adolescents were matched to uninfected adolescents (4:1) by sex and age group (12-14 and 15-18 years). We enrolled 250 HIV-infected (48% male; median age 14.5 years; 93% perinatally infected) and 59 uninfected (51% male; median age 14.1 years) adolescents. At enrollment, HIV-infected adolescents were on antiretroviral therapy (ART) for a median (IQR) of 7.5 (4.7-10.2) years, and 14% had HIV-RNA >1000 copies/mL; 19% reported adherence <80%. Eighty-four (34%) HIV-infected and 26 (44%) uninfected adolescents reported having ever smoked cigarettes or drunk alcohol (p = 0.13); 10% of HIV-infected and 17% of uninfected adolescents reported having initiated sexual activity; 6 of the HIV-infected adolescents had HIV-RNA >1000 copies/mL. Risk behaviors were common among adolescents, with few differences between those with and without HIV.
  8. Ku SW, Jiamsakul A, Joshi K, Pasayan MKU, Widhani A, Chaiwarith R, et al.
    J Int AIDS Soc, 2019 Mar;22(3):e25264.
    PMID: 30924281 DOI: 10.1002/jia2.25264
    INTRODUCTION: Cotrimoxazole (CTX) is recommended as prophylaxis against Pneumocystis jiroveci pneumonia, malaria and other serious bacterial infections in HIV-infected patients. Despite its in vitro activity against Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the effects of CTX preventive therapy on tuberculosis (TB) remain unclear.

    METHODS: Adults living with HIV enrolled in a regional observational cohort in Asia who had initiated combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) were included in the analysis. Factors associated with new TB diagnoses after cohort entry and survival after cART initiation were analysed using Cox regression, stratified by site.

    RESULTS: A total of 7355 patients from 12 countries enrolled into the cohort between 2003 and 2016 were included in the study. There were 368 reported cases of TB after cohort entry with an incidence rate of 0.99 per 100 person-years (/100 pys). Multivariate analyses adjusted for viral load (VL), CD4 count, body mass index (BMI) and cART duration showed that CTX reduced the hazard for new TB infection by 28% (HR 0.72, 95% CI l 0.56, 0.93). Mortality after cART initiation was 0.85/100 pys, with a median follow-up time of 4.63 years. Predictors of survival included age, female sex, hepatitis C co-infection, TB diagnosis, HIV VL, CD4 count and BMI.

    CONCLUSIONS: CTX was associated with a reduction in the hazard for new TB infection but did not impact survival in our Asian cohort. The potential preventive effect of CTX against TB during periods of severe immunosuppression should be further explored.

  9. Bijker R, Kumarasamy N, Kiertiburanakul S, Pujari S, Lam W, Chaiwarith R, et al.
    PMID: 30833516 DOI: 10.3851/IMP3298
    BACKGROUND: We aimed to project the 10-year future incidence of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and model several intervention scenarios based on a multi-site Asian HIV-positive cohort.

    METHODS: Analyses were based on patients recruited to the TREAT Asia HIV Observational Database (TAHOD), consisting of 21 sites in 12 countries. Patients on triple antiretroviral therapy (ART) were included if they were alive, without previous CVD, and had data on CVD risk factors. Annual new CVD events for 2019-2028 were estimated with the D:A:D equation, accounting for age- and sex-adjusted mortality. Modelled intervention scenarios were treatment of high total cholesterol, low high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) or high blood pressure, abacavir or lopinavir substitution, and smoking cessation.

    RESULTS: Of 3,703 included patients, 69% were male, median age was 46 (IQR 40-53) years and median time since ART initiation was 9.8 years (IQR 7.5-14.1). Cohort incidence rates of CVD were projected to increase from 730 per 100,000 person-years (pys) in 2019 to 1,432 per 100,000 pys in 2028. In the modelled intervention scenarios, most events can be avoided by smoking cessation, abacavir substitution, lopinavir substitution, decreasing total cholesterol, treating high blood pressure and increasing HDL.

    CONCLUSIONS: Our projections suggest a doubling of CVD incidence rates in Asian HIV-positive adults in our cohort. An increase in CVD can be expected in any ageing population, however, according to our models, this can be close to averted by interventions. Thus, there is an urgent need for risk screening and integration of HIV and CVD programmes to reduce the future CVD burden.

    Matched MeSH terms: Asia
  10. Mu W, Bartlett AW, Bunupuradah T, Chokephaibulkit K, Kumarasamy N, Ly PS, et al.
    J. Acquir. Immune Defic. Syndr., 2019 Mar 01;80(3):308-315.
    PMID: 30531299 DOI: 10.1097/QAI.0000000000001921
    BACKGROUND: Virologic failure is a major threat to maintaining effective combination antiretroviral therapy, especially for children in need of lifelong treatment. With efforts to expand access to HIV viral load testing, our understanding of pediatric virologic failure is evolving.

    SETTING: An Asian cohort in 16 pediatric HIV services across 6 countries.

    METHODS: From 2005 to 2014, patients younger than 20 years who achieved virologic suppression and had subsequent viral load testing were included. Early virologic failure was defined as a HIV RNA ≥1000 copies per milliliter within 12 months of virologic suppression, and late virologic as a HIV RNA ≥1000 copies per milliliter after 12 months following virologic suppression. Characteristics at combination antiretroviral therapy initiation and virologic suppression were described, and a competing risk time-to-event analysis was used to determine cumulative incidence of virologic failure and factors at virologic suppression associated with early and late virologic failure.

    RESULTS: Of 1105 included in the analysis, 182 (17.9%) experienced virologic failure. The median age at virologic suppression was 6.9 years, and the median time to virologic failure was 24.6 months after virologic suppression. The incidence rate for a first virologic failure event was 3.3 per 100 person-years. Factors at virologic suppression associated with late virologic failure included older age, mostly rural clinic setting, tuberculosis, protease inhibitor-based regimens, and early virologic failure. No risk factors were identified for early virologic failure.

    CONCLUSIONS: Around 1 in 5 experienced virologic failure in our cohort after achieving virologic suppression. Targeted interventions to manage complex treatment scenarios, including adolescents, tuberculosis coinfection, and those with poor virologic control are required.

  11. Han WM, Jiamsakul A, Kiertiburanakul S, Ng OT, Sim BL, Sun LP, et al.
    J Int AIDS Soc, 2019 Jan;22(1):e25236.
    PMID: 30697944 DOI: 10.1002/jia2.25236
    INTRODUCTION: Comorbidities including diabetes mellitus (DM) among people living with HIV (PLHIV) are of increasing clinical concerns in combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) era. We aimed to determine the incidence and risk factors of new-onset DM among PLHIV in Asian settings.

    METHODS: PLHIV from a regional observational cohort without DM prior to antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation were included in the analysis. DM was defined as having a fasting blood glucose ≥126 mg/dL, glycated haemoglobin ≥6.5%, a two-hour plasma glucose ≥200 mg/dL, or a random plasma glucose ≥200 mg/dL. A Cox regression model, stratified by site, was used to identify risk factors associated with DM.

    RESULTS AND DISCUSSION: Of the 1927 participants included, 127 were diagnosed with DM after ART initiation. Median follow-up time from ART initiation to DM diagnosis was 5.9 years (interquartile range (IQR): 2.8 to 8.9 years). The crude incidence rate of DM was 1.08 per 100 person-years (100 PYS), 95% confidence interval (CI) (0.9 to 1.3). In the multivariate analysis, later years of follow-up (2011 to 2013: HR = 2.34, 95% CI 1.14 to 4.79, p = 0.02; and 2014 to 2017: HR = 7.20, 95% CI 3.27 to 15.87, p 50 years: HR = 4.19, 95% CI 2.12 to 8.28, p 30 kg/m2 (HR = 4.3, 95% CI 1.53 to 12.09, p = 0.006) compared to BMI <18.5 kg/m2 , and high blood pressure (HR = 2.05, 95% CI 1.16 to 3.63, p = 0.013) compared to those without high blood pressure, were associated with developing DM. The hazard was reduced for females (HR = 0.47, 95% CI 0.28 to 0.80, p = 0.006).

    CONCLUSIONS: Type 2 DM in HIV-infected Asians was associated with later years of follow-up, high blood pressure, obesity and older age. This highlights the importance of monitoring and routine screening for non-communicable diseases including DM as PLHIV age.

  12. Ahn MY, Jiamsakul A, Khusuwan S, Khol V, Pham TT, Chaiwarith R, et al.
    J Int AIDS Soc, 2019 Feb;22(2):e25228.
    PMID: 30803162 DOI: 10.1002/jia2.25228
    INTRODUCTION: Multiple comorbidities among HIV-positive individuals may increase the potential for polypharmacy causing drug-to-drug interactions and older individuals with comorbidities, particularly those with cognitive impairment, may have difficulty in adhering to complex medications. However, the effects of age-associated comorbidities on the treatment outcomes of combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) are not well known. In this study, we investigated the effects of age-associated comorbidities on therapeutic outcomes of cART in HIV-positive adults in Asian countries.

    METHODS: Patients enrolled in the TREAT Asia HIV Observational Database cohort and on cART for more than six months were analysed. Comorbidities included hypertension, diabetes, dyslipidaemia and impaired renal function. Treatment outcomes of patients ≥50 years of age with comorbidities were compared with those <50 years and those ≥50 years without comorbidities. We analysed 5411 patients with virological failure and 5621 with immunologic failure. Our failure outcomes were defined to be in-line with the World Health Organization 2016 guidelines. Cox regression analysis was used to analyse time to first virological and immunological failure.

    RESULTS: The incidence of virologic failure was 7.72/100 person-years. Virological failure was less likely in patients with better adherence and higher CD4 count at cART initiation. Those acquiring HIV through intravenous drug use were more likely to have virological failure compared to those infected through heterosexual contact. On univariate analysis, patients aged <50 years without comorbidities were more likely to experience virological failure than those aged ≥50 years with comorbidities (hazard ratio 1.75, 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.31 to 2.33, p Asia regional cohort, age-associated comorbidities did not affect virologic outcomes of cART. Among those with comorbidities, patients <50 years old showed a better CD4 response.

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