Implants and injectables: PrEP in the future
Last month’s announcement that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will give up to $140 million to a Boston drug device manufacturer to develop an implantable mini-pump to deliver drugs for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) against HIV infection has focused attention on the future of PrEP. Is the future all about implants, or will it offer multiple options for people who want to use PrEP?
Implants and other long-acting drug delivery systems have attracted interest as a means of delivering PrEP because studies show consistently that non-adherence – missing doses or not using an intravaginal ring – is strongly correlated with lack of protection from PrEP. Conversely, studies also show that people who maintain adequate levels of PrEP drugs are protected from HIV infection.