New drug adds to arsenal against AIDS

July 15, 2011

A new drug, rilpivirine, can add powerfully to the combination of medications used to control HIV for first-time patients, researchers conclude in Friday's issue of The Lancet.

Rilpivirine, marketed by pharmaceutical firm Tibotec under the brand name of Edurant, is both safe and effective and its side effects are fewer and less severe compared with the widely-used efavirenz, or Sustiva, they say.

Combination therapy for new commonly entails giving either efavirenz or nevirapine in conjunction with drugs of a separate class in order to attack the (HIV) from different angles.

Efavirenz and nevirapine are equally effective at suppressing HIV but can cause severe side effects, which is why there has been a search for a substitute drug in their class.

The two studies report on data from two trials carried out among nearly 1,400 patients in 21 countries.

Rilpivirine, a so-called second generation antiretroviral, was approved for combination therapy in May by the (FDA).

The study appears in the runup to a four-day medical conference, starting in Rome on Sunday, on the state of the HIV/AIDS pandemic.

Acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) has claimed some 30 million lives since the first recorded cases emerged in June 1981. At least 33 million people are living with HIV, according to UN estimates for 2009.

Related Stories

Recommended for you

HVTN 505 vaccine induced antibodies nonspecific for HIV

July 30, 2015

A study by researchers at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and Duke University helps explain why the candidate vaccine used in the HVTN 505 clinical trial was not protective against HIV infection ...

Vitamin D status related to immune response to HIV-1

June 15, 2015

Vitamin D plays an important part in the human immune response and deficiency can leave individuals less able to fight infections like HIV-1. Now an international team of researchers has found that high-dose vitamin D supplementation ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.