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Now in its twentieth year, IHV2018 will convene a special joint international meeting of the Institute of Human Virology (IHV) and the Global Virus Network (GVN) to address virus threats and cancers.

To mark the 40th anniversary of HTLV discovery – the first retrovirus and the first virus shown to directly cause a human cancer – an opening session is devoted to a retrospective of human T-cell leukemia virus (HTLV-1) research, the current global state of the virus, and new frontiers in HTLV-1 studies and treatment. In light of the rapidly evolving body of knowledge linking viruses and cancer, several sessions investigate the significance of exosomes, epigenetics, and tumor microenvironments in cancer.

New and intriguing treatments for the disease currently being shaped by this research are explored, including immunotherapy, gene transfer therapy, and novel therapeutic vaccines. The emerging global health problem of existing and, as yet undiscovered, new viruses is discussed in the context of GVN initiatives to advance awareness of infectious diseases, develop drugs and vaccines to combat these diseases, and harness the individual strengths of expert medical virologists across the globe to combat the growing threat of viral pandemics.

The meeting also focuses on PEPFAR and the important strides made over the last 15 years in controlling the HIV worldwide epidemic, particularly in resource-limited settings, as well as ongoing projects designed to advance the strengthening of global capacity to prevent, detect, and respond to infectious disease threats. Expert immunology researchers will discuss current efforts to target early infection events to better understand regulation of immune responses, retroviral pathogenesis, and approaches for prevention and treatment.

A session is also devoted to persistent viruses, namely hepatitis B and C, with a focus on approaches to total elimination from the body, as well as global elimination of HBV and HCV. 

Building on past successes, IHV2018 will again solicit early investigator research abstracts for poster presentation to facilitate mentorship and promote an enduring opportunity for scientific dialog and exchange which has long been the hallmark of IHV’s Annual Meeting.