New York, December 6, 2018 – Treatment Action Group has released a new report focusing on the ethically complex and potentially risky aspect of research aiming to develop a cure for HIV infection: the use of “analytical treatment interruptions” (ATIs) in clinical studies to investigate how HIV viral load rebounds, and whether experimental interventions can limit viral replication after antiretroviral therapy (ART) is interrupted. Due to the difficulties of measuring precisely the size of the reservoir of cells latently infected by HIV, and the lack of laboratory measures to reliably predict if a therapeutic approach has affected an individual’s chance to control HIV in the absence of ART, ATIs are currently an integral part of many ongoing and planned clinical trials.
Produced with the generous support of the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) and Macy’s Inc./“Thanks for Giving,” the new TAG report Community Recommendations for Clinical Research Involving Antiretroviral Treatment Interruptions in Adults outlines an HIV advocacy perspective on key parameters related to the conduct of ATIs. The report’s aim is to maximize the safety of participants and provide a comprehensive, community-oriented resource on the topic.
The report includes results from an online survey of community-based advocates that garnered 85 responses, the majority of whom self-identified as people living with HIV. These findings informed a set of recommendations on the use of ATIs in clinical research. The report also provides a summary table containing information on the 34 current clinical trials and observational studies involving an ATI.
Additional TAG HIV cure resources—also facilitated and maintained with ETAF support—include a regularly updated webpage listing of clinical trials and observational studies related to HIV cure research. Currently, it includes 130 active and 138 completed studies, with links to clinical trial registry entries and available results of both ongoing and completed trials (https://www.treatmentactiongroup.org/cure/trials). The unique listing has become widely used and cited by scientists, community advocates, and people living with HIV interested in participating in studies.
TAG is grateful to ETAF/Macy’s Inc./“Thanks for Giving” and our many other donors for supporting this work.
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About TAG: Treatment Action Group (TAG) is an independent, activist and community-based research and policy think tank fighting for better treatment, prevention, a vaccine, and a cure for HIV, tuberculosis, and hepatitis C virus. TAG works to ensure that all people with HIV, TB, or HCV receive lifesaving treatment, care, and information. We are science-based treatment activists working to expand and accelerate vital research and effective community engagement with research and policy institutions. TAG catalyzes open collective action by all affected communities, scientists, and policy makers to end HIV, TB, and HCV.