Clinical and scientific challenges in HIV-associated malignancies

Polizzotto, Mark N.; Mitsuyasu, Ronald T.

Even with effective ART people with HIV remain at increased risk of many medical comorbidities. Most prominent among these is an elevated risk of cancer. The risk of malignancy remains approximately double that of the general population and, in both resource rich and resource limited settings, cancer is now the leading cause of death for people with HIV. Although cancers associated with severe immunosuppression are less common in the modern era, the risk of many malignancies including most lymphomas, lung cancer, and anal cancer remains substantially elevated as Shiels et al. (pp. 6–11) describe in this issue. This excess burden of cancer is important not only for its human impact on people living with HIV but also for its resource implications for health systems and its social and economic impact on communities.

The 14 reviews in this issue of Current Opinion in HIV and AIDS, entitled ‘Clinical and scientific challenges in HIV-associated malignancies’, are selected to reflect the breadth of clinical science currently underway in HIV-associated malignancies. They are grouped thematically, covering, in the first section epidemiology and the foundational role of ART; in the second, advances in prevention and therapy of specific HIV-associated malignancies; and in the third, broader issues in the field including selected special populations. In this editorial, we discuss the implications of the advances described in this issue as they apply in resource rich and resource limited settings, and consider the ways in which work in HIV-associated malignancies can help inform and develop clinical care and scientific studies more broadly.

December 5, 2016
Year of publication
Resource types
Journal and research articles
HIV-associated malignancies, comorbidities, cancer, health systems, HIV-associated cancers

Similar Resources

This issue of the Southern African HIV Clinicians Society's "HIV Nursing Matters" online magazine focuses on vulnerable populations, including TB in prisons and intimate partner violence in the context of HIV.

This issue of the Southern African HIV Clinicians Society's "HIV Nursing Matters" online magazine focuses on key populations.

Researchers from the Dutch pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) demonstration study, AmPrEP, have found an unexpectedly high rate of hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection in participants tested for it at baseline.

Treatment with efavirenz has been associated with rare but severe liver complications among patients receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART) in South Africa.

There is significant attrition at each stage of the HIV care continuum in South Africa, according to a study published in the online edition of the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes. The population-based research was conducted in North West Province and revealed that of…


The goal of virtual elimination of horizontal and mother-to-child HIV transmission in South Africa (SA) has been proposed, but there have been few systematic investigations of which interventions are likely to be most critical to reducing HIV incidence.

HIV-infected patients require antiretroviral treatment for life. To improve access to care, CD4 enumeration and viral load tests have been redesigned to be used as point-of-care techniques using finger-stick blood.

Disclosure of HIV serostatus can have significant benefits for people living with HIV/AIDS. However, there is limited data on whether partner disclosure influences ART treatment response.


As pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) with tenofovir disoproxil fumarate and emtricitabine for the prevention of HIV infection is rolled out internationally, strategies to maintain effectiveness and to minimise adverse effects merit consideration.