Antiretroviral therapy Could Lead to Decline in HIV Incidence
New York, NY - The use of antiretroviral therapy (ART) taken as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) could lead to a marked decline in HIV incidence—the annual rate of infection—among men who have sex with men (MSM) in the UK by the end of this decade, new modelling research published in The Lancet HIV journal suggests.
The research shows that offering PrEP alongside regular HIV testing and early treatment to just a quarter of MSM at high risk of contracting HIV could prevent around 7400 new HIV infections (44% of total incidence) in the UK before 2020.
“Current prevention efforts in the UK that focus on correct and consistent condom use and regular HIV testing have been falling short. HIV rates among men who have sex with men remain high with around 2800 men who have sex with men becoming infected with HIV in 2014, and the trend shows no sign of abating,” explains lead author Dr Narat Punyacharoensin who conducted the research while at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK.
“Our results show that pre-exposure prophylaxis offers a major opportunity to curb new infections and could help reverse the HIV epidemic among men who have sex with men in the UK.”
Dr. Punyacharoensin and colleagues used a mathematical model fitted with behavioural and surveillance data to evaluate the ability of various HIV prevention measures (ie, expansion of HIV testing, test-and-treat programmes, PrEP, and sexual behavioural changes) to avert HIV infections in MSM (aged 15 to 64 years old) in the UK between 2014 and 2020. If the status quo is maintained, the researchers predict 16955 new HIV infections in MSM between 2014 and 2020. Continue>
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