HIV/AIDS Research: What’s Hot Right Now?

November 2013
REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

To commemorate December’s World AIDS Day, ScienceWatch examines the hottest of recent research on HIV/AIDS. For this analysis, we turn to Essential Science Indicators (a subset of Thomson Reuters Web of Science) and its coverage of Hot Papers—reports published in the last two years, all cited at a level notably above papers of comparable type and age in the same journal. In other words, papers that have made an immediate splash in the research community, as reflected in their high citation rates.

The table below features 20 such reports published between 2011 and 2013, all featuring the terms “HIV” or “AIDS” in their titles. The papers are listed according to their total citations as compiled in Web of Science as of late November.

For a closer look at this selection of recent, highly cited research, ScienceWatch also presents the most prominent funding agencies that are explicitly acknowledged in the papers themselves. Additional tables specify the individual researchers who contributed to multiple papers among this cohort of 20, as well as the institutions that are most frequently listed.

Notable atop the listing of papers are reports discussing the identification of powerful antibodies able to neutralize the broad range of HIV-1 viruses. Three reports in particular (#1, #3, and #4), published concurrently in Nature and Science, treat this aspect of research, and the phrase “broadly neutralizing antibody” recurs elsewhere in the table.

Among funders, the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) stands apart, being mentioned in the funding acknowledgements in 16 of the 20 papers, a total more than twice that of the next-listed institution, the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative. (Note: For simplicity’s sake, all occurrences of the NIH or its component institutions as rendered in the funding acknowledgments [e.g., the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases, the National Cancer Institute, etc.] have been unified here under the main “NIH” name.)

Among the institutions whose authors are most prominently represented in the group of 20 Hot Papers, Harvard University and the Scripps Research Institute (La Jolla, California) share top honors.

Scripps researchers, in fact—with seven names in all—make a particularly strong showing among the prolific authors of these Hot Papers (including the #1 report), demonstrating that, as of now, the recent work to which they contributed is unmistakably central to ongoing research against HIV/AIDS.

 

Hottest Papers in HIV/AIDS Research, 2011-2013

Of reports published in the last two years, cited at a rate notably above papers of comparable type and age in the same journal. Listed according to citations recorded in Web of Science as of late November 2013

Rank Paper Cites
1 L.M. Walker, et al., “Broad neutralization coverage of HIV by multiple highly potent antibodies,” Nature, 477(7365): 466-70, 22 September 2011. 207
2 B.F. Haynes, et al., “Immune-correlates analysis of an HIV-1 vaccine efficacy trial,” New Engl. J. Med., 366(14): 1275-86, 5 April 2012. 166
3 X.L. Wu, et al., “Focused evolution of HIV-1 neutralizing antibodies revealed by structures and deep sequencing,” Science, 333(6049): 1593-1602, 16 September 2011. 165
4 J.F. Scheid, et al., “Sequence and structural convergence of broad and potent HIV antibodies that mimic CD4 binding,” Science, 333(6049): 1633-7, 16 September 2011. 158
5 J.S. McLellan, et al., “Structure of HIV-1 GP120 V1/V2 domain with broadly neutralizing antibody PG9,” Nature, 480(7377): 336-43, 15 December 2011. 132
6 J.M. Baeten, et al., “Antiretroviral prophylaxis for HIV prevention in heterosexual men and women,” New Engl. J. Med., 367(5): 399-410, 2 August 2012. 129
7 R. Pejchal, et al., “A potent and broad neutralizing antibody recognizes and penetrates the HIV glycan shield,” Science, 334(6059): 1097-1103, 25 November 2011. 124
8 M.A. Thompson, et al., “Antiretroviral treatment of adult HIV infection 2012 recommendations of the International Antiviral Society-USA panel,” JAMA-J. Am. Med. Assn., 308(4): 387-402, 25 July 2012. 112
9 M.C. Thigpen, et al., “Antiretroviral preexposure prophylaxis for heterosexual HIV transmission in Botswana,” New Engl. J. Med., 367(5): 423-34, 2 August 2012. 97
10 L. Shan, et al., “Stimulation of HIV-1-specific cytolytic T lymphocytes facilitates elimination of latent viral reservoir after virus reactivation,” Immunity, 36(3): 491-501, 23 March 2012. 78
11 N.M. Archin, et al., “Administration of vorinostat disrupts HIV-1 latency in patients on antiretroviral therapy,” Nature, 487(7408): 482-5, 26 July 2012. 69
12 S.G. Deeks, “Towards an HIV cure: A global scientific strategy,” Nature Rev. Immunol., 12(8): 607-14, August 2012. 62
13 J.H. Huang, et al., “Broad and potent neutralization of HIV-1 by a GP41-specific human antibody,” Nature, 491(7424): 406-12, 15 November 2012. 58
14 Y.D. Mao, et al., “Subunit organization of the membrane-bound HIV-1 envelope glycoprotein trimer,” Nature Struct. Molec. Biol., 19(9): 893-9, September 2012. 28
15 M. Lindqvist, et al., “Expansion of HIV-specific T follicular helper cells in chronic HIV infection,” J. Clin. Invest., 122(9): 3271-80, September 2012. 27
16 A. Saez-Cirion, et al., “Post-treatment HIV-1 controllers with a long-term virological remission after the interruption of early initiated antiretroviral therapy, ANRS VISCONTI Study,” PLOS Pathogens, 9(3): No. 1003211, March 2013. 19
17 F. Tanser, et al., “High coverage of ART associated with decline in risk of HIV acquisition in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa,” Science, 339(6122): 966-71, 22 February 2013. 17
18 H. Mouquet, et al., “Complex-type N-glycan recognition by potent broadly neutralizing HIV antibodies,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 109(47): E3268-77, 20 November 2012. 16
19 J.P. Julien, et al., “Asymmetric recognition of the HIV-1 trimer by broadly neutralizing antibody PG9,” Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 110(11): 213-8, 12 March 2013. 14
20 S.F. Xing, R.F. Siliciano, “Targeting HIV latency: Pharmacologic strategies toward eradication,” Drug Discovery Today, 18(11-12), 541-51, June 2013. 3
SOURCE: Thomson Reuters Web of Science

 

Hottest Research on HIV/AIDS, 2011-2013:
Prominent Funding Agencies

Listed by number of papers (out of 20 recent, highly cited reports) in which each funding entity is expressly acknowledged

Funding Agency Papers
US National Institutes of Health (combined agencies) 16
International AIDS Vaccine Initiative 7
US Department of Energy 6
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation 4
Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard 4
Canadian Institute of Health Research 2
Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (UK) 2
Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation 2
Howard Hughes Medical Institute 2
Merck/MSD 2
Roche 2
Wellcome Trust 2
SOURCE: Thomson Reuters Web of Science

 

Hottest Research on HIV/AIDS, 2011-2013:
Prolific Institutions

Listed by number of papers (out of 20 recent, highly cited reports) that specify at least one affiliated author at the given institution

Institution Papers
Harvard University 7
Scripps Research Institute 7
International AIDS Vaccine Initiative 6
Johns Hopkins University 5
US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases 5
Duke University 4
Massachusetts General Hospital 4
Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard 4
University of Amsterdam 4
Columbia University 3
University of California, San Francisco 3
University of Washington 3
SOURCE: Thomson Reuters Web of Science

 

Hottest Research on HIV/AIDS, 2011-2013:
Authors with Multiple Highly Cited Reports

Listed by number of papers (out of 20 recent, highly cited reports) to which each researcher contributed

Name Hot Papers
Dennis R. Burton
Scripps Research Institute
5
Barton F. Haynes
Duke University School of Medicine
5
Jean-Philippe Julien
Scripps Research Institute
4
Ian W. Wilson
Scripps Research Institute
3
Wayne C. Koff
International AIDS Vaccine Initiative
3
Peter D. Kwong
US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
3
John R. Mascola
US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
3
Robert Pejchal
Scripps Research Institute
3
Pascal Poignard
Scripps Research Institute
3
Laura M. Walker
Scripps Research Institute
3
Andrew B. Ward
Scripps Research Institute
3
Yongping Yang
US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
3
Baoshan Zhang
US National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
3
SOURCE: Thomson Reuters Web of Science

The data and citation records included in this report are from Thomson Reuters Web of ScienceTM. Web of ScienceTM is a registered trademark of Thomson Reuters. All rights reserved.