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June 1, 2010

Dear Advocate,

Last week, nearly 1,000 researchers, advocates, funders and policy makers gathered in Pittsburgh for the International Microbicides Conference (M2010). This update provides links to coverage of that meeting--and a reminder to keep an eye out for more information on AVAC's upcoming webinar series that will explore key issues in biomedical prevention research raised at M2010. This will also help us prepare for the XVIII International AIDS Conference (IAC) in Vienna, July 18-23. 

Also in this update: information on the 2010 Omololu Falobi Award winner and links to some key reports that were released at the M2010 meeting. 

M2010: News Summaries and Upcoming Teleforums

At M2010 there were a number of interesting and important research updates from both the microbicide and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) fields. Check out some of the coverage from the conference on NAM's aidsmap, the Sunday Times in South Africa and Citizen News Service.

And, starting this month, AVAC will be hosting a series of webinars on key HIV prevention research updates and related topics. These calls will help advocates further explore the research presented at M2010 that may  also grab the spotlight at IAC. Visit or look for an update later this week with information on webinar topics, times and speakers.

2010 Omololu Falobi Award Recipient 

At the M2010 closing ceremony, Charles Shagi was presented the 2010 Omololu Falobi Award for Excellence in HIV Prevention Research Community Advocacy. 

The Omololu Falobi Award highlights the essential role of community advocacy and leadership in HIV prevention research. It celebrates the life and values of the late Omololu Falobi, a long-time HIV advocate and journalist who was killed in Lagos, Nigeria in October 2006. 

Charles Shagi, a Program Officer for the African Medical and Research Foundation, who is based in Mwanza, Tanzania, was honored for his significant contributions to developing and sustaining community engagement and education programs that empower women and their communities to advocate for themselves and to become vital partners in HIV prevention research trials. 

Visit AVAC's Omololu Falobi Award page for more information on the Award, the selection process, how you can contribute and past Award recipients.

New Resources 

Several new resources were launched at M2010:

  • Microbicides: Ways Forward is the final in a series of strategy documents put out by the Alliance for Microbicide Development. In 2009, the Alliance surveyed a number of microbicides experts and key stakeholders in the field in an effort to identify areas of progress, obstacles that remain and priorities for the field. These conversations and insights inform much of the new report, which concludes with nine key recommendations for moving the microbicide field forward. The Alliance officially closed at the end of 2009, and this report is one of many key Alliance resources that are being integrated into AVAC's continually expanding education, outreach, advocacy and policy work. Visit to request a printed copy.
  • The Communications Handbook for Clinical Trials is a practical guide developed for site-level researchers, communicators, advocates and others working on HIV prevention trials in developing countries. It provides guidance on how to anticipate and respond to the special communications challenges posed by the conduct of clinical research. Organized to correspond to the chronological steps involved in conducting research, it focuses on the various communications skills that are needed throughout the course of a trial. A collaborative project, the Handbook includes context-specific case studies and practical insights from actual clinical trial communications initiatives. The Handbook was co-published by the Microbicide Media and Communications Initiative (MMCI) and Family Health International (FHI). Email to order your hard copy and the 30-minute DVD that accompanies the Handbook.

If you have any questions or comments please don't hesitate to be in touch and stay tuned for details on the webinar series!



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