Title: HIV and hepatitis B co-infection in Africa
Authors: Lessells RJ, Main J, Cooke GS.
Journal: Lancet Infectious Diseases,8:210-11 (2008)
The Review by Christopher Hoff mann and Chloe Thio1 brings to the fore the issue of HIV and hepatitis B virus (HBV) co-infection in resource-poor settings. We support their call for further research in this fi eld. The management of HIV/HBV co-infection in highincome settings involves individualised therapy usually from an expert provider with the support of an array of diagnostic tests. The primary goal of this treatment is to reduce the risk of cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma.
However, the public-health approach to antiretroviral therapy (ART) aims to maximise survival at the population level.2 ART programmes in Africa and other resource-poor settings involve standardised treatment protocols and simplifi ed monitoring to achieve best possible use of available resources. The treatment of hepatitis B is already entwined with the roll-out of ART since lamivudine, a key drug in most fi rst-line HIV treatment combinations, is also active against HBV.
Citation: Lessells RJ, Main J, Cooke GS. HIV and hepatitis B co-infection in Africa Lancet Infectious Diseases,8:210-11 (2008).