Amsterdam health auth. approves HIV prevention pill human tests

Pills (Photo: MorgueFile / Wikimedia Commons). (Pills (Photo: MorgueFile / Wikimedia Commons))

Municipal health service GGD Amsterdam is taking part in an international scientific study in which a new HIV prevention pill will be tested on humans. The aim is to find out whether experimental drug F/TAF is safe and effective in preventing HIV infection in healthy adults. Gay men and transgender women who have sex with men who are interested in participating in this study, can register with GGD Amsterdam until March 26th, AT5 reports.

The study involves the new PrEP pill, which is a pill with anti-retroviral drugs meant to prevent an HIV infection. A PrEP pill is intended for people who are not infected with HIV but are at increased risk of becoming infected. According to pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences, this PrEP pill has fewer side effects than the current drug.

A total of approximately five thousand volunteers will participate in this study at about 100 centers in North America and Europe. The number of Dutch participants is dependent on the speed with which the total number of participants is reached world wide. Pharmaceutical company Gilead stresses that participants should realize that it is not yet certain whether this new PrEP pill will work. The study will tell. 

In a reaction the Dutch Aids Fund stated that the existing and proven effective PrEP pill is still not accessible and affordable in the Netherlands. "It is distressing that people have to choose to participate in a study to get access to the HIV prevention pill PrEP. It prevents HIV, reduces costs and free people from fear of HIV", the fund said.