Global Campaign for Microbicides

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Quick Quotes

What people are saying...

 

On the CAPRISA 004 tenofivir microbicide trial results

 

“We have proof of concept! This is an historic moment for our movement and I wanted to give special recognition to all who have been fighting in the trenches lo these many years. As we used to say, getting a product is just the first step (and this trial is but a step on that path), but it is an important first step nonetheless, and one that will energize the field. There is much work to be done.  But for now, I encourage us all to take a moment, celebrate, and know that we have made a real difference in the world.”

Lori Heise

Advocate/Founder of GCM & Director of GCM from 2001 to 2009

 

“Almost exactly 12 years ago, a handful of us formed the Global Campaign at the 1998 International AIDS Conference in Geneva. Personally, I have been working toward this day for the last eighteen years, in the company of more and more determined women and men who share this dream. Today, we step across the threshhold from dream to reality. Today we received proof that microbicides are possible.

 

Decades more of work will be needed to reach the day when safe, effective microbicides are accessible to all who need them -- and we can choose the one that meets our personal needs from among a range of options. But the feasibility of this goal is no longer a question. It is now a fact. So today, we celebrate.”

 

Anna Forbes

Advocate/GCM staff from 2000-2010

 

"It is the first time an HIV-prevention method controlled entirely by women, who bear the brunt of the epidemic in Africa, has been shown to work. Indeed, about a third of women in the study said their partners didn't know they were using the clear, odorless gel…Still, because it is the first study to show the gel works, I would like to see a confirmatory study.”

 

Salim Abdool Karim

CAPRISA Principal Investigator

 

"'We now have a product that can potentially alter the epidemic and save millions of lives.”

 

Quarraisha Abdool Karim

CAPRISA Co- Principal Investigator

 

"Broader trials are needed to confirm the results, and it will most likely be years before the product is publicly available, but if produced on a large scale the gel would cost less than 25 cents per application, the lead investigators estimated.It’s a game changer.”

 

Bruce Walker

Researcher

 

"The gel could place prevention squarely in the hands of women; unlike with a condom, their partners would not have to consent to its use, and might not even know it is being used. Given that women make up the majority of new HIV infections throughout the world, this finding is an important step toward empowering an at-risk population with a safe and effective HIV prevention tool."

 

Anthony S. Fauci, M.D.
NIAID Director

 

“TDF gel works to prevent HIV and herpes transmission! Great news for women, great news for all of us--thanks go to the activists, scientists, policymakers who have pushed the microbicide field forward over the past few years.”

 

Gregg Gonsalves

Activist

 

“Wow, great, breakthrough. After so many year progress, much needs to be done to up the percentage but good news for women.”

 

Nomfundo Eland

Activist 

 

“This is excellent news. I hope the women who participated in the study will continue to be provided with the gel and not have to wait years before it is publicly available.”

 

Judie Blair

Executive Director of South Africa Development Fund

 

On the need

 

"Topical microbicides just makes it a lot easier for women.  It gives them a degree of control" said Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease at the National Institutes of Health.  "They're important because of the relationship between the HIV pandemic and women's ability to protect themselves in societies that don't allow them that freedom."

 

From: FDA fast-tracks anti-HIV and herpes gel, United Press International; January 11, 2006

 

“There is an urgent need for more methods to prevent HIV infection, especially those that put women in control. The search for an effective and safe vaginal microbicide has been progressing too slowly-we need more researchers from the public and private sectors acting with appropriate urgency to development a microbicide."

 

Dr. Peter Piot
Executive Director of UNAIDS

 

"At any given moment, more heterosexual women than gay men are engaging in anal intercourse. A receptive partner is a receptive partner. We need rectal microbicides, just as we need vaginal microbicides: to help receptive sex partners save their own lives."

 

Anna Forbes,
Aids Activist

 

"Having sex with her husband is considered a wife's duty, even when she knows that her husband has had other partners and wishes to protect herself. If she insists that he use a condom or refuses to have sex with him, she may be beaten or abandoned. Even if a woman suspects that her spouse may have been exposed to HIV, she has nowhere to turn for support, and there are no laws to protect her."

 

Deborah K. Raditapole,
Minister of Health and Social Welfare, Lesotho

 

"What if no reliable, male-controlled HIV prevention device yet existed? Wouldn't the demand for one be deafening?"

 

Anna Forbes,
Aids Activist

 

"If you advise your husband to use a condom, he may beat you and send you away. Where do you go then?"

 

Rural woman,
Uganda

 

"I know plenty of women who really don't have a choice when it comes to using protection with their partners. Condoms are just not an option for them because a lot of these women are battered. With a microbicide, a woman can protect herself from both HIV and a black eye." 

 

Debra Fleming
HIV+ twenty years, Chicago, IL

 

"If microbicides would have been available to me, I may never have become infected. They are important for all women, especially women of childbearing age who want to have children but not risk infection. They are also important for married couples, where it may be difficult for a woman to negotiate condoms. Men don't like condoms, never have, never will. That is always an issue."

 

Patrice Dean
HIV+ at least 15 years, Chicago, IL

 

"Women’s need for protection against sexually transmitted pathogens, like the need for contraception, varies greatly from one individual to another, and can change over the course of a lifetime. The availability of both a rectal and vaginal microbicide will ensure that women have options, should they need them, for protection against HIV and other STIs. For this reason, an investment in research on rectal microbicides is essential."

 

Geeta Rao Gupta,
Leading global authority on women’s development

 

"It should be an urgent priority to accelerate research on promising new HIV prevention methods, and I hope that the discovery and development of an effective microbicide or oral prevention drug could mark a turning point in the epidemic. We need tools that will allow women to protect themselves.  This is true whether the woman is a faithful married mother of small children, or a sex worker trying to scrape out a living in a slum. No matter where she lives, who she is, or what she does - a woman should never need her partner's permission to save her own life. The pace of research on new HIV prevention methods has not been fast enough, given the urgent need.”

 

Bill Gates,
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

 

On the feasibility

 

"Most scientists today agree that an effective microbicide against HIV would be possible to develop-as long as appropriate energy, resources and a conducive research environment were there."

 

Dr. Joseph Perriens,
UNAIDS

 

"The development of an effective microbicide is a global priority of the highest order…
The question is not whether the microbicide approach will prevent HIV infection but, rather, what proportion of HIV infections it will prevent.

 

Dr. Alan Stone,
Medical Research Council, UK

 

"We can make good, safe microbicides publicly available if we choose to. We have everything we need to make it happen-except the will and the money."

 

Dr. Sharon Hillier, MD, PhD,
Microbicide Researcher, University of Pittsburgh

 

"I ask only that you see microbicides, not merely as one of the great scientific pursuits of the age, but as a significant emancipation for women whose cultural, social and economic inheritance have put them so gravely at risk. Never in human history have so many died for so little reason. You have a chance to alter the course of that history. Can there be any task more noble?"

 

Dr. Stephen Lewis,
UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for HIV/AIDS in Africa

 

"We call upon world leaders to put the power to prevent HIV in the hands of women by accelerating the search for microbicides and other new HIV prevention tools. The discovery of an effective microbicide or oral prevention drug to reduce HIV transmission could be the next big breakthrough in the fight against AIDS".

 

Bill and Melinda Gates,
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation