The POPPY Study was started in 2013 as the first large-scale study to assess clinical outcomes of people living with HIV (PLWH) over the age of 50 in England and Ireland.
Discussions around the management of HIV as a long-term chronic disease have been ongoing since the mid-1990s when the impressive benefits of antiretroviral therapy (ART) became apparent.
Recent studies have suggested that PLWH may experience a speeding up of the aging process, with reports of increases in the rates of several co-morbidities, including cardiovascular disease (CVD), cancers, and end-stage liver and renal disease.
The cohort includes participants from 8 clinics, seven of which are in the UK, and one of which is in Ireland. The cohort includes three specific groups of people:
- 699 PLWH aged >50 years;
- 374 PLWH aged <50 years; and
- 304 HIV-negative people aged >50 years.
The group of older PLWH were selected in such a way as to ensure that this older cohort is broadly representative of older PLWH in the UK and Ireland.
The group of younger PLWH and the HIV-negative group were then selectively recruited to ensure that they had similar demographic and lifestyle characteristics to the older PLWH. This helps to ensure that our findings are as robust as possible.
It is hoped that findings from the study will be helpful for the development and implementation of evidence-based recommendations for the management and clinical monitoring of older PLWH.
Study results will also contribute to the design of future studies for the treatment of diseases associated with ageing in this population.