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To save lives, HIV treatment alone isn’t enough. Suppressing HIV is what matters.

In 2011, a landmark clinical trial showed that early initiation of anti-retroviral therapy (ART) for people who are HIV-infected cuts the risk of HIV transmission by a stunning 96 percent. The trial provided powerful new momentum to global efforts to expand treatment access — both for the health of individuals living with HIV and for the potential to prevent millions of new infections.

Getting people onto treatment, though, is only half the story. To save lives and slow the HIV epidemic, treatment needs to achieve long-term virologic suppression — meaning the level of HIV in a person’s body is essentially undetectable. In most countries, only a minority of people with HIV have their virus in check. To make viral suppression the norm, better adherence programs, viral load monitoring and other steps are urgently needed.

What We're Reading

Two studies published on Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine showed the effects of the monthly, long-acting injectable forms of cabotegravir and rilpivirine (Edurant). One study compared the injectable combination to standard oral therapy in people with HIV who were already virally suppressed. The other study compared the efficacy of the two drugs in injectable form to that of oral therapy for patients who were treatment-naive at the start of the study.

March 4, 2020
The BodyPro

The ANRS TasP trial did not—and could not—demonstrate a reduction in HIV incidence, because the offer of UTT in the intervention communities did not increase ART coverage and population viral suppression compared to the standard of care in the control communities.

February 18, 2020
Current HIV/AIDS Reports
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