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July 13, 2011

Daily Pill Can ‘Prevent’ HIV, Study Suggests

A daily dose of Gilead Science's Truvada, used to treat patients with HIV, can also prevent the spread of the disease to uninfected individuals, a new study has shown. The research, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Botswana Ministry of Health, found th

By cms admin

A daily dose of Gilead Science’s Truvada, used to treat patients with HIV, can also prevent the spread of the disease to uninfected individuals, a new study has shown.

The research, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Botswana Ministry of Health, found that the oral tablets reduced the risk of infection in heterosexual men and women by 78%.

Half the 1,200 patients enrolled on the study in Botswana were given the antiretroviral drug and the other half were given a placebo.

In a separate announcement, the University of Washington , which co-managed the research, released the results of another study which tested 4,700 heterosexual couples in Kenya and Uganda.

In each couple, on partner was infected with HIV and the other was not. The uninfected partner received either placebos, Truvada drugs or tenofovir (Viread) – an enzyme inhibitor.

The medications in this study reduced the spread of infection in this study by 62-63%.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for HIV/AIDs director Kevin Fenton said, “These are exciting results for global HIV prevention. We now have findings from two studies showing that pre-exposure prophylaxis can work for the population hardest hit by HIV worldwide.

“Taken together, these studies provide strong evidence of the power of this prevention strategy,” added Fenton.

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