Brief description

  • ASHM has initiated work to support progress in understanding and responding to HTLV-1 in Australia.
  • Human T-lymphotropic virus type 1 (HTLV-1), shares some features of HIV; it is a retrovirus that causes a chronic infection; it is transmitted by sex, blood contact and from mother to child, and it causes damage to the immune system. However, unlike HIV it causes a much more diffuse range of disease, severe in some people and mild or even non-existent in many others with the infection. Its distribution around the world is highly focal, with very high prevalences in particular geographic locations and populations and very rare elsewhere. HTLV-1 is present at very high rates in some Aboriginal communities of central and northern Australia.
  • Recent research has led to an increasing awareness in Australia of HTLV-1 and its impact. A group of clinicians and researchers have come together with a representative of central Australian Aboriginal communities to provide a forum for increasing awareness about HTLV-1, and guiding clinical, public health and community responses to the infection.
  • With these goals, an initial round table meeting was held in conjunction with the Australasian HIV and AIDS Conference in Adelaide in November 2016. A working group was established to take forward outcomes from the meeting.
  • A second meeting of the round table was held at the Australasian HIV&AIDS Conference in Canberra in November 2017. ASHM's goal is to be able to support these meetings annually.


Round Table 2016


Round Table 2017


Round Table 2018

  • Agenda
  • Read the Report back (Coming soon)
  • View the meeting Outcomes (Coming soon)

Presentations and webinars


Published articles and reports


HTLV-1 in the news

Figure:  TECHNICAL REPORT:  Geographical distribution of areas with a high prevalence of HTLV-1 infection published by European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC)


Future events


Contact ASHM about HTLV-1

Please feel free to submit papers, reports and reports for consideration for uploading via email: