A Cascade of Hope and Questions: Anticipating results of ARV-based HIV prevention trials

Published: July 16, 2010

Background

In the coming months and years, data will be released from a range of clinical trials of antiretroviral
(ARV)-based prevention. These include trials of oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and topical
ARV-based microbicides. Each of these trials will provide a piece of the puzzle of how antiretrovirals
could be used by HIV-negative people to reduce their risk of acquiring HIV. Positive results from any
of these trials would be cause for excitement, as there is an urgent need for additional biomedical
HIV prevention strategies. Any single trial that showed a positive result would also raise additional
questions. This document is designed to provide advocates with a “big picture” of the ARV-based
prevention landscape, with a focus on trials in HIV-negative people. It covers the decisions and
processes that might be triggered by data from individual trials of PrEP and ARV-based
microbicides, and describes how these trials fit together.

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