Nov. 6, 2019

Controlling the Global HIV and TB Epidemics: The Challenges, The Opportunities, and the Consequences of Failure


Join Dr. Emilio Emini as he speaks about the Global HIV and TB epidemics during his lecture- "Controlling the Global HIV and TB Epidemics:  The Challenges, The Opportunities, and the Consequences of Failure".

Infections with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and the Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacterium remain the world’s largest causes of infection-associated morbidity and mortality.  Almost 40 million people worldwide are living with persistent HIV infection with 1.0 million annual deaths.  It is estimated that one-quarter of the global population is latently infected with M. tuberculosis resulting in approximately 10 million yearly cases of tuberculosis (TB) and 1.5 million annual deaths.  This is despite decades of efforts to control the HIV epidemic and over a century of efforts to control the TB epidemic.  While recent decades have witnessed encouraging declines in the incidence of new infections for both epidemics, the rates of decline have not substantially improved in recent years.  In some populations, the numbers of new infections have increased.

The challenges underlying the inability to continue improving the rates of decline are multiple and significant.  The biomedical interventions that have enabled control of other epidemics, specifically therapies that can readily and effectively cure the infected and highly effective vaccines that can provide prolonged protection to the uninfected, are lacking for HIV and TB.  In addition, the social challenges facing the disenfranchised populations among whom new infections predominantly occur remain unaddressed in many parts of the world. 

Nonetheless, dedicated work continues to develop improved biomedical interventions that can sustain HIV suppression and that can mediate TB cure with a short course of treatment irrespective of pre-existing drug resistance.  Also, despite substantial biological hurdles, innovative efforts to develop an HIV cure, and truly effective HIV and TB vaccines, remain ongoing with slow but steady progress.  Efforts to improve the social factors that predispose to infection acquisition are also being pursued, albeit unevenly.  These goals require long-term commitment and support.  Yet, there is growing concern that the needed support will decrease instead of increase over the coming years as the world turns its attention elsewhere.  The consequence of losing interest before attaining the goal of control is the inevitable rebound of the epidemic and the reversal of the gains that have been achieved.

6:30PM-7:30PM Lecture
7:30PM-8:30PM Reception

ABOUT Emilio A. Emini, Ph.D., FCPP, FAAM

Emilio A. Emini, Ph.D., director of the HIV program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, leads the team focused on accelerating the reduction in the incidence of HIV infection, in high-burden geographies/populations of Southern and Eastern Africa, with the goal of achieving sustained epidemic control.

Emilio is an adjunct professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. In 2006, he was awarded the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Cornell University Graduate School of Medical Sciences. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, a fellow of the International Society for Vaccines, a fellow of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and a former trustee of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases. Emilio also served as a member of the National Preparedness & Response Science Board, an advisory committee to the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services. He received his Ph.D. in Microbiology, Genetics and Biochemistry from the Cornell University Graduate School of Medical Sciences.

For more information about Dr. Emilio Emini and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation go to

Light refreshments created by Catering By Design provided after the lecture.

The Mütter Museum will not be open during this event.

-Tickets are transferable to other people, but are not refundable

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ASL interpretation is available for any event upon request. Please contact Meredith Sellers to place a request for an ASL interpreter or for any other accessibility accommodations.

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