Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis or PrEP

Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) involves putting HIV negative people on antiretroviral drugs (ARV) with the aim of protecting them from HIV infection. This blog looks at some of the pros and cons of PrEP.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Is the Big Pharma Tail Wagging the Dr Dog?

In addition to the good work that the Aids Healthcare Foundation is doing to question the 'fast-tracking' of the use of Truvada as PrEP when it has so far shown such poor efficacy, a group of 55 US physicians have signed a letter, also urging the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to delay approval until further tests, which may take years, have been carried out.

PrEP may be a great theory and Truvada may be a great drug. But there is little to get excited about yet. If effectiveness in the real world (as opposed to efficacy in carefully controlled trial contexts) can reach a reasonable level, which would be a lot higher than the unimpressive 44% found in the iPrEX study, then it will be time to consider the use of Truvada as PrEP.

It's good to hear that some doctors are standing up for their patients. Others appear to be in the thrall, or in the pocket, of Big Pharma. Many AIDS and human rights activists seem to have got the wrong end of the stick on this one: people have a right to safe healthcare, not to be used as free lab-rat material.


No comments:

Post a Comment