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.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

RETRACTION: 127 Zimbabwean Women Were Not Infected With HIV During Trial

Following an article in, I mistakenly wrote that one arm of the Vaginal and Oral Interventions to Control the Epidemic (VOICE) trial, involving the antiretroviral drug Tenofovir, was stopped because 127 women taking the drug became infected with HIV. In fact, these women were taken out of the trial because of 'futility', the finding that it would not be possible to show that the treatment they were receiving was more effective than the placebo that another group was receiving.

I apologise for reporting something so alarmist when the only source was an online article (which apparently also appeared in the Sunday Mail) that was released without any named author. I will take more care in commenting on such articles in the future. I have removed my blog post from the three sites where I placed it and will make the same efforts to publicize this retraction as I made with the original.

There will be a press release confirming the above, which I will post as a comment to this report as soon as it is available.


1 comment:

Simon said...

The press release has, apparently, been issued. However I wasn't able to find a link to it so I've created a copy in Google Docs.

As a matter of interest, the press release says "In HIV prevention trials, we do everything possible to reduce a participant’s risk of acquiring HIV." This is not true. They may do everything possible to reduce sexual risk but little or nothing is done to reduce non-sexual risk. People may be counselled about sexual transmission and how to minimize their risk; but they are generally not counselled about non-sexual transmission, nor how to minimize their risk. It is expected that over 200 women will be infected during the course of the trial but there may be little or no effort made to establish how the infection occurred. Rather, it is likely that sexual infection will be assumed.

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