Without a known cause.
Low level of platelets without a cause.
Intravenous (injection) drug user
A breakdown or inability of certain parts of the immune system to function, thus making a person susceptible to certain diseases that they would not ordinarily develop.
The activity of the immune system against foreign substances.
The body's complicated natural defense against disruption caused by invading foreign agents (e.g., bacteria, viruses). Elements of the immune system include the T lymphocytes (including the CD4 and CD8 cells) and the antibody-producing B cells.
Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP)
Also called idiopathic immune thrombocytopenic purpura. A condition in which the body produces antibodies against the platelets in the blood, which are cells responsible for blood clotting. ITP is very common in persons infected with HIV.
Protection against an infectious disease by vaccination, usually with a weakened (attenuated) or killed form of the disease-causing micro-organism. Whereas people are usually immunised against an infectious disease by getting vaccinated, having a disease such as measles, mumps, or rubella one time usually prevents or 'immunises' a person from getting this disease again.
A natural or acquired resistance to a specific disease. Immunity may be partial or complete, long-lasting or temporary.
Capable of developing an immune response; possessing a normal immune system.
Refers to an immune system in which the ability to resist or fight off infections and tumours is subnormal.
Breakdown of the immune system in which certain parts of the immune system no longer function. This condition makes a person more susceptible to certain diseases.
(Antigen) A substance capable of provoking an immune response.
The ability of an antigen or vaccine to stimulate an immune response.
Also called immune serum globulin. A class of proteins also known as antibodies made by the B cells of the immune system in response to a specific antigen. There are five classes of immunoglobulins.
Immunoglobulin A (IgA)
A class of antibodies that is secreted into body fluids such as saliva. IgA protects the body's mucosal surfaces from infections.
Immunoglobulin D (IgD)
A class of antibodies that is present in low concentration in serum.
Immunoglobulin E (IgE)
A class of antibodies involved in antiparasite immunity and in allergies.
Immunoglobulin G (IgG)
The dominant class of antibodies and the one that provides long-term protection against infection. In pregnancy, IgG crosses the placenta to the foetus and protects it against infection. Also called gammaglobulin.
Immunoglobulin M (IgM)
A class of antibodies that is made by the body as the initial response to an infection or immunisation. If IgM is made in response to an immunisation, a booster shot will result in a 'switch' from IgM to mostly immunoglobulin G.
A method for determining the extent of disease progression based on CD4 cell counts or percentages. See
CD4 Cell Count and CD4 Percentage
Any substance that influences the immune system.
Any agent or substance that triggers or enhances the body's defence; also called immunopotentiator.
A state of the body in which the immune system is damaged and does not perform its normal functions. Immunosuppression may be induced by drugs (e.g., in chemotherapy) or result from certain disease processes, such as HIV infection.
Treatment aimed at restoring an impaired immune system.
A plant or animal toxin (i.e., poison) that is attached to an antibody and used to destroy a specific target cell.
The number of new cases (e.g., of a disease) occurring in a given population over a certain period of time. Also called seroincidence.
The medical or social standards determining whether a person may or may not be allowed to enter a clinical trial. For example, some trials may not allow persons with chronic liver disease or with certain drug allergies; others may exclude men or women, or include only persons with a lowered T-cell count.
The time interval between the initial infection with an infectious agent (e.g., HIV) and the appearance of the first symptom or sign of disease.
Indeterminate Test Result
A laboratory test result that does not give a clear answer. Either additional laboratory studies should be performed or the test should be repeated.
The state or condition in which the body (or part of the body) is invaded by an infectious agent (e.g., a bacterium, fungus, or virus), which multiplies and produces an injurious effect (active infection). As related to HIV, infection typically begins when HIV encounters a CD4+ cell.
An infection capable of being transmitted by direct or intimate contact (e.g., sex).
A process during which the patient learns the key facts about HIV testing--including what will occur during HIV testing and counselling and the purpose and benefits of HIV testing--before deciding whether to allow testing to proceed.
The process of administering fluid, other than blood, to an individual by slowly injecting a solution of the compound into a vein. Infusions are often used when the drug is too toxic or the volume is too large to be given by quick injection.
The introduction of a substance (inoculum; e.g., a vaccine, serum, or virus) into the body to produce or to increase immunity to the disease or condition associated with the substance. See
A condition in which the body is unable to respond to and use the insulin it produces. As a result, the pancreas secretes more insulin into the bloodstream in an effort to reduce blood glucose levels.
A little-understood enzyme that plays a vital role in the HIV infection process. Integrase inserts HIV's genes into a cell's normal DNA.
A class of experimental anti-HIV drugs that prevents the HIV integrase enzyme from inserting viral DNA into a host cell's normal DNA.
Intent to Treat
Analysis of clinical trial results that includes all data from patients in the groups to which they were randomised (i.e., assigned through random distribution) even if they never received the treatment.
One of a number of antiviral proteins that control the immune response. Interferon (IFN) alpha is secreted by a virally infected cell and strengthens the defences of nearby uninfected cells. A manufactured version of IFN alpha (trade names Roferon, Intron A) is an FDA-approved treatment for Kaposi sarcoma, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C. Interferon gamma is synthesised by immune system cells (natural killer cells and CD4 cells). It activates macrophages and helps promote cellular immunity.
Substances (cytokines) that are released from immune and other cells. There are many types referred to as Interleukin (IL) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, etc.
Relating to or situated in the small, narrow spaces between tissues or parts of an organ.
An action or strategy to change a particular problem or outcome or accomplish a specific result (e.g., use of ART to prevent HIV disease progression).
Injected directly into a muscle.
Time during labour and delivery.
Of or pertaining to the inside of a vein, as of a thrombus. An injection made directly into a vein.
Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIG)
A sterile solution of concentrated antibodies extracted from healthy people. IVIG is used to prevent bacterial infections in persons with low or abnormal antibody production. IVIG is injected into a vein.
Before birth; literally, in the uterus.
An artificial environment created outside a living organism (e.g., a test tube or culture plate) used in experimental research to study a disease or process.
('In life') Within living organisms. (Often refers to animal or human studies.)
An individual part of an organism (such as a spore or a bacteria or virus) that has been separated (as from diseased tissue, contaminated water, or the air) from the whole.
An orally administered drug used to eliminate tuberculosis infection in people without active disease. INH is also administered in combination with other drugs to treat active tuberculosis
Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura (ITP)
Intravenous Immunoglobulin (IVIG)