Once-Daily Raltegravir and Dolutegravir-Based Dual-Drug Regimen Show Promise

On behalf of IFARA, Fred Schaich spoke with Pedro Cahn, M.D., Ph.D., about two late-breaking studies presented at this year's International AIDS Conference and about global funding for HIV. The first presentation reported on a clinical trial among 800 patients, two-thirds of whom were randomized to a once-daily formulation of raltegravir (Isentress) and one-third to the currently prescribed twice-daily version of the drug. It showed the new formulation to be non-inferior to current dosing.

The second presentation concerned a proof of concept study among 20 people with viral loads of 5,000-100,000 copies/mL who took a dual-drug regimen of dolutegravir (Tivicay, DTG) and lamivudine (3TC, Epivir). Viral loads among all study participants fell to below 400 copies/mL by week three and to undetectable (less than 50 copies/mL) at week eight. A randomized trial of 600 volunteers will now compare dolutegravir and tenofovir/FTC (Truvada) with dolutegravir/lamivudine. If successful, "we could really have a paradigm change in terms of initial therapy," because dolutegravir-based treatment is cheaper, less toxic and does not require monitoring, Cahn said.

The cost of treatment is a major issue for low- and middle-income countries, especially in light of most major donor countries' reducing their contributions. Cahn deplored that funding shortfall and called on developed nations to provide more funding for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria instead of spending the money on bailing out banks and buying arms.

Watch the video to learn more:

About the panelist:

  • Pedro Cahn, M.D., Ph.D., Fundación Huésped and Buenos Aires University Medical School, Argentina

The video above has been posted on TheBodyPRO.com with permission from our partners at the International Foundation for Alternative Research in AIDS (IFARA). Visit IFARA's website or YouTube channel to watch more video interviews from the conference, as well as earlier meetings.