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DNDi and Cipla advance development of pediatric 4-in-1 ARVs to fulfill new WHO guidelines
Date:6/30/2013

ed with 54% of adults (2011 data). Without treatment, half of all HIV-positive children will die before the age of two, and 80% will die before they turn five years old.

DNDi entered the field of pediatric HIV in 2011 due to the critical unmet need of an appropriate ARV formulation for infants and young children. Current formulations of protease inhibitors for children too young to swallow tablets are in an alcohol-based liquid form. These formulations taste terrible, are difficult to store and transport, and require refrigeration, which is a hindrance in many developing countries. Additionally, administering the correct dose of medicine is challenging since it involves measuring precise amounts of various liquid formulations, which risks errors in dosing. Undesirable interactions with drugs for tuberculosis, the most common co-infection with HIV, pose further challenges.

To fulfill the need for better pediatric formulations, DNDi is partnering with the Indian drug manufacturer Cipla Ltd. to develop two 4-in-1 ARV FDCs designed specifically for children under three years of age, or until they are able to swallow tablets. This new formulation comprises tiny granules, which fit into a capsule that can be opened to spread the medicine onto soft food or be mixed with milk. The ARVs are 'taste-masked', require no refrigeration, and are easy to dose according to the child's weight.

'Since its creation in 2006, UNITAID has been addressing pediatric HIV by creating the market for child-friendly antiretroviral treatments as previously there was no incentive for pharmaceutical companies to invest in developing these medicines and so none existed', said Philippe Douste-Blazy, Chair of the Board of UNITAID. 'The international community must continue to commit to developing the best possible treatments to avoid childhood HIV becoming a neglected disease. UNITAID's investment in this project with DNDi is already a vital contribution.'

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Contact: Oliver Yun
oyun@dndi.org
646-266-5216
Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative
Source:Eurekalert

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