Sunday, November 21, 2010
Healthy gay men who took an anti-AIDS pill every day were well protected against contracting H.I.V. in a study suggesting that a new weapon against the epidemic has emerged. The results are the best news in the AIDS field in years, even better than this summer’s revelation that a vaginal microbicide protected 39 percent of all the women testing it and 54 percent of those who used it faithfully. Also, Truvada, a combination of tenofovir and emtricitabine that prevents the virus from replicating, is available by prescription in many countries right now, while the microbicide gel is made in only small amounts for clinical trials. Truvada, a combination of antiretroviral drugs made by Gilead Sciences, costs around $13,000 a year in the United States. - DONALD G. McNEIL Jr.