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AVAC Says Results of New PrEP Trials Provide Clear Evidence that Antiretroviral Drugs for Prevention Can Help End the AIDS Epidemic; Calls for Quick Action to Move Landmark HIV Prevention Results Toward Lifesaving Programs
Date:7/13/2011

NEW YORK, July 13, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Results from two African studies of pre-exposure prophylaxis, or PrEP, released today provide clear evidence that the antiretroviral drugs used to treat HIV can also be used to prevent HIV among heterosexual men and women at risk of HIV infection.

"These results are tremendously exciting and confirm that we are at pivotal period in the AIDS epidemic," said Mitchell Warren, AVAC executive director. "Antiretroviral (ARV) drugs for HIV treatment began to turn the tide of the epidemic 15 years ago, and it is clear that also using ARVs for HIV prevention will strengthen our response to AIDS. PrEP, ARV-based microbicides and treatment as prevention are powerful tools to help end the cycle of new infections and end the epidemic."

"We now have data that earlier treatment initiation in HIV-positive people can reduce risk of HIV transmission—and that use of ARVs in HIV-negative people can reduce risk of infection. There is a global imperative to act on these results without delay," Warred added. "Now is the time to include ARV-based prevention in national plans, applications to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and donor priorities. We need ambitious pilot and demonstration projects to guide programmatic design, along with national and international guidance on how best to use ARVs as lifesaving prevention tools. The next steps will not be simple but they will be essential. Scientific data do not change the world—programs and policies backed by civil society, donors, implementers and governments do. The countries where PrEP trials took place should lead the way in these critical efforts."

"We congratulate the trial sponsors, scientific collaborators and partners who conducted these trials. We especially want to thank the more than 10,000 men and women whose altruism and commitment as trial volunteers made this effort possible," Warren said. "These volunteers and thei
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