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Prophylactic contraceptives for HIV/AIDS.

Review article
Uckun FM, et al. Hum Reprod Update. 1999 Sep-Oct.


The current pandemic of sexually transmitted human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection--the causative agent of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS), has created an urgent need for a new type of contraceptive: one that is both a spermicide and a microbicide. Because most women at risk for HIV infection are of reproductive age (15-44 years), effective use of dual-function contraceptives is important to prevent HIV transmission and unintended pregnancies. In the absence of an effective prophylactic anti-HIV therapy or vaccine, new emphasis has been placed on the development of intravaginal microbicidal agents capable of reducing the transmission of HIV. Topical microbicidal spermicides would ideally provide a female-controlled method of self-protection against HIV as well as preventing pregnancy. However, several microbicides that are undergoing preclinical and human clinical trials contain detergent-type ingredients. The detergent-type spermicide, nonoxynol-9, the only recommended microbicide for protection against sexual transmission of HIV has been shown to cause lesions in vaginal and cervical epithelia leaving women more vulnerable to HIV infection. Therefore, a major challenge in microbicide research has been to design mechanism-based microbicides that are highly effective against pregnancy and HIV transmission while lacking detergent-type effects on epithelial cells and normal vaginal flora. We present an overview of current microbicide research and report on the identification and preclinical development of novel non-detergent spermicidal nucleoside and non-nucleoside inhibitors aimed at decreasing pregnancy and preventing sexual transmission of HIV.


10582788 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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