Making an advancement in prevention of HIV that further leads to the deadly AIDS, a new study has suggested that the virus can be prevented with easy-to-use intra-vaginal ring filled with an anti-retroviral drug.
According to the study, the ring could be extremely effective at preventing the deadly HIV in women.
The researchers say, the ring is easy to use and long lasting.
It was recently demonstrated and found to be 100 percent successful from preventing the simian immunodeficiency virus (SHIV). The ring is easily inserted and stays in place for 30 days.
Patrick Kiser, an expert in intra-vaginal drug delivery, “After 10 years of work, we have created an intra-vaginal ring that can prevent against multiple HIV exposures over an extended period of time, with consistent prevention levels throughout the menstrual cycle.”
Pills must be taken daily and require high doses; vaginal gels that must be applied prior to each sex act are inconvenient, yielding poor usage rates.
And because it is delivered at the site of transmission, the ring – known as a TDF-IVR (tenofovir disoproxil fumarate intravaginal ring) – utilises a smaller dose than pills.
The device contains powdered tenofovir, an anti-retroviral drug that is taken orally by 3.5 million HIV-infected people worldwide, but that has not previously been studied topically, researchers said.
The device will soon undergo its first test in humans, researchers said. The upcoming clinical trial, to be conducted in November at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York, will evaluate the ring in 60 women over 14 days.
During the trial, the ring’s safety and measure how much of the drug is released and the properties of the ring after use, will be analyzed.
Other drugs could potentially be integrated into the ring, such as contraceptives or antiviral drugs to prevent other sexually transmitted infections – a feature that could increase user rates, said Kiser, who joined Northwestern University from the University of Utah, where the research was conducted.
The study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).