NORTH study

A national retrospective case series on the management of disseminated NOn-tubeRculous mycobacTerial infection in adults living with HIV


This is a retrospective UK-wide case series. Data will be collected on adults living with HIV with disseminated NTM infection in the last 10 years, with one year of documented post-antibiotic cessation follow up.


The incidence of opportunistic infections in the era of modern ART is decreasing, but they remain an important cause of morbidity, hospitalisation and mortality in people living with HIV in high income settings. Due to the low incidence of opportunistic infections, research in this field remains challenging. Retrospective studies remain a valuable tool to obtain timely data on such conditions and can help address knowledge gaps and improve patient outcomes.

Current outstanding questions in the management of disseminated NTM infection in people living with HIV are:

  1. What is the minimum safe treatment duration for disseminated NTM infection in the context of modern ART?
  2. What is the frequency of relapse of disseminated NTM disease in people living with HIV according to varying treatment durations?
  3. What clinical parameters may inform safe discontinuation?

The primary aim of this study is to describe the adverse outcomes and frequency of relapse according to different NTM treatment durations. This work will help inform recommendations on safe discontinuation of NTM treatment to prevent relapse or adverse outcomes, in particular looking at when is it safe to stop (treatment duration) and clinical parameters that may affect safe discontinuation.


Trainee doctors working in hospital trusts in the UK that provide HIV services, including management of opportunistic infections, are invited to take part.

The NORTH study is a trainee-led study, run by Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust.


The NORTH study will open in March 2024, and is looking for interested participating sites.

If you would be interested in taking part in the NORTH study or want to hear more about it please contact the project lead, Cristina Fernandez, on We would love to hear from you!