Thursday, July 23, 2009

Evidence shows new drug combination combination dramatically reduces mother-to child transmissionof HIV during breastfeeding

According to a new study led by the World Health Organization (WHO), if HIV-positive pregnant women are given a combination of antiretroviral (ARV) drugs from late in pregnancy until six months into breastfeeding, rather than a short course of drugs that ends at delivery, their babies are over 40% less likely to become infected with HIV.

The initial findings of the study, named Kesho Bora, which means ‘a better future’ in Swahili, were presented at the 5th International AIDS Society Conference on HIV Pathogenesis, Treatment and Prevention taking place in Cape Town, South Africa, 19-22 July. WHO worked in partnership with the French National Agency for Research on AIDS and Viral Hepatitis (ANRS), the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) of the US National Institutes of Health.

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