Novel Technique Halves HIV Drug Dosage
MARCH 06, 2017
Lauren Santye, Assistant Editor
A novel nanotechnology approach can reduce HIV treatment dosages and improve drug delivery, according to a study.
Current HIV treatments require a daily oral dose of HIV drugs. Unfortunately, chronic oral dosing can have significant complications caused by high pill burden.
In 2 studies, investigators reported on the development of novel oral therapies using Solid Drug Nanoparticle (SDN) technology. This approach can improve drug absorption in the body, resulting in the reduction of both dosages and cost per dose, allowing existing health care budgets to treat more patients.
Using the drugs efavirenz (EFV) and lopinavir (LPV), the trial results confirmed the potential for dosing to be cut in half, while maintaining therapeutic exposure.
EFV is the preferred regimen currently recommended by the World Health Organization. There is an estimated 70% of adults on first-line EFV-based treatment in low- and middle-income countries.
“The potential applications for HIV treatment are incredibly promising,” said Benn Kottiri, research division chief USAID’s office of HIV/AIDS Research. “By aligning efforts, these integrated investments offer the potential to reduce the doses required to control the HIV virus even further, resulting in real benefits globally. This would enable the costs of therapy to be reduced which is particularly beneficial for resource-limited countries where the burden of disease is highest.”
The trial is associated with the University of Liverpool’s ongoing work as part of the multinational consortium OPTIMIZE––a global partnership seeking to accelerate access to safer and more affordable HIV drugs. The findings were presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections in Seattle, Washington.
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