Recent data from studies on treatment as prevention (TasP) and preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) show that antiretroviral drugs can be used in prevention, as well as in treatment. The movement from first-generation antiretroviral therapy (ART) coformulations based on thymidine analogues to second-generation ART coformulations based on tenofovir may coincide with future prevention strategies that also use tenofovir/emtricitabine, raising concerns regarding drug resistance. In published studies, failure of prophylaxis was associated with poor adherence and low plasma drug levels. Although rates of drug resistance in cases of failed prevention was low, regular human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing was undertaken in these clinical trials. Although legitimate concerns exist about ART adherence and drug resistance associated with PrEP and TasP in real-world settings, efforts to curb the continuing HIV epidemic through use of these novel prevention strategies should move forward because the development and approval of newer drugs reserved for prevention might take many more years. Efforts must be made to monitor ART adherence and to intervene through counseling and other means in order to optimize adherence and retention in care, whenever necessary. Finally, further research involving the generalized epidemic is needed to determine when suboptimal drug use may occur and when regular testing and monitoring of the long-term consequences of ART use may not be routine.
- antiretroviral drug resistance
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy
- Infectious Diseases