Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Review shows male circumcision protects female partners from HIV and other STDs


A statistical review of the past medical files of more than 300 couples in Uganda, in which the female partner was HIV negative and the male was HIV positive, provides solid documentation of the protective effects of male circumcision in reducing the risk of infection among women. Male circumcision also reduced rates of trichomonas and bacterial vaginosis in female partners. The study is believed to be the first to demonstrate the benefits to female partners of male circumcision.

Specifically, male circumcision reduced by 30 percent the likelihood that the female partner would become infected with the virus that causes AIDS, with 299 women contracting HIV from uncircumcised partners and only 44 women becoming infected by circumcised men. Similar reductions in risk were observed for the other two kinds of infection, but not for other common STDs, including human papillomavirus, syphilis, gonorrhea and Chlamydia.

According to the Hopkins researchers who led the study, Ronald Gray, M.D., and Steven Reynolds, M.D., M.P.H., the findings support efforts to assess male circumcision as an effective means of preventing HIV infection. Circumcision is a practice common in North America and among Jews and Muslims, but not generally in Eastern and Southern Africa, Europe or Asia.

The couples in the study come from the Rakai cohort, a population of roughly 12,000 in Uganda whom researchers are monitoring to see how HIV infection spreads. The researches based their findings on extensive interviews with each participant and annual check-ups and blood tests.

The findings confirm what has been noticed anecdotally in Africa, where regions in which circumcision is common have lower rates of HIV infection than those without. And, the results confirm what was first reported in summer 2005 from a clinical trial conducted in South Africa about the protective effects of circumcision on HIV-negative men who have sex with HIV-positive women.

According to researchers, circumcision’s effects come from the nature of the foreskin’s inner lining, or mucosa, whose cells bind to the virus more easily and have roughly nine times more virus in them than the outer layer of the foreskin. Removal of the foreskin, they say, may simply reduce the susceptibility factor, or degree of exposure to HIV, for the sexual partner.

Thomas C. Quinn, M.D., professor of infectious diseases at Hopkins and a senior investigator at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, will present an overview of this trial, plus two others presently under way, as part of a plenary discussion at CROI on circumcision and HIV. But, he says, "We will have to wait for the ongoing two trials before drawing conclusive recommendations about circumcision for all men, and whether or not the benefits apply to transmission from females to males only, or to females from men as well. However, early indications are dramatic and, if proven, one case of HIV disease could be prevented through circumcising anywhere from 15 to 60 males."

Male Circumcision and the Risks of Female HIV and STI Acquisition in Rakai, Uganda, by Ronald Gray, Marie Thoma, Oliver Laeyendecker, David Serwadda, Fred Nalugoda, Godfrey Kigozi, Noah Kiwanuka, Nelson Sewankambo, Steven Reynolds, Maria Wawer, and Thomas Quinn. And, Circumcision and HIV Transmission:The Cutting Edge, by Thomas Quinn.

David March | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Diagnoses: When Are Several Opinions Better Than One?
19.07.2016 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht High in calories and low in nutrients when adolescents share pictures of food online
07.04.2016 | University of Gothenburg

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

Im Focus: Diamonds aren't forever: Sandia, Harvard team create first quantum computer bridge

By forcefully embedding two silicon atoms in a diamond matrix, Sandia researchers have demonstrated for the first time on a single chip all the components needed to create a quantum bridge to link quantum computers together.

"People have already built small quantum computers," says Sandia researcher Ryan Camacho. "Maybe the first useful one won't be a single giant quantum computer...

Im Focus: New Products - Highlights of COMPAMED 2016

COMPAMED has become the leading international marketplace for suppliers of medical manufacturing. The trade fair, which takes place every November and is co-located to MEDICA in Dusseldorf, has been steadily growing over the past years and shows that medical technology remains a rapidly growing market.

In 2016, the joint pavilion by the IVAM Microtechnology Network, the Product Market “High-tech for Medical Devices”, will be located in Hall 8a again and will...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

First-time reconstruction of infectious bat influenza viruses

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Novel method to benchmark and improve the performance of protein measumeasurement techniques

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Amazon rain helps make more rain

25.10.2016 | Life Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>