The trickery of the cornered cat. Estimating HIV incidence using biomarkers: are we ever going to be able to get this cat into a bag?

Speaker: Prof John Hargrove

Title: The trickery of the cornered cat. Estimating HIV incidence using biomarkers: are we ever going to be able to get this cat into a bag?

Abstract: The seminar will give an overview of ongoing problems associated with attempting to estimate HIV incidence using biomarkers. The talk will focus on the analysis of data obtained using blood samples from postpartum women Harare, analysed using the BED, LAg and BioRad methods. Early biomarker systems were unsatisfactory because they incorrectly diagnosed a relatively large proportion of long-term HIV infections as recent cases. These large, and variable, false recent rates (FRRs) led to over-estimates of HIV incidence and to a healthy scepticism of the approach. Newer biomarker systems exhibit FRRs that are up to an order of magnitude lower. Moreover, FRRs can also be further reduced by using viral load as a further marker for recency. One might then have thought that the cat was in the bag: the present talk suggest, however, that there may yet be more feline trickery in store.

Bio: John Hargrove spent the first 30 years of his research life working on tsetse flies in the Zambezi Valley of Zimbabwe. He then worked for six years working as a data analyst on HIV projects in Harare before coming to SACEMA in 2006. Since that time he has continued to work in both HIV and tsetse.

DATE: Friday, 30 September 2016

VENUE: SACEMA Boardroom, 19 Jonkershoek Road, Stellenbosch

TIME: 12h00 – 13h00

Light refreshments are served after the Seminar.

Kindly RSVP before 12h00 on the 28 September 2016.