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N Engl J Med. 2015 Aug 6;373(6):530-9. doi: 10.1056/NEJMoa1410649.

Tenofovir Gel for the Prevention of Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2 Infection.

Author information

1
From the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) (S.S.A.K., Q.A.K., A.B.M.K., C.B., A.C.G., L.W., L.E.M., N.S., A.M., T.N.G.) and the University of KwaZulu-Natal (S.S.A.K.) - both in Durban, South Africa; the Department of Epidemiology, Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University, New York (S.S.A.K., Q.A.K.); and the Division of Pharmacotherapy and Experimental Therapeutics, Eshelman School of Pharmacy, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (A.K.).

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Globally, herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) infection is the most common cause of genital ulcer disease. Effective prevention strategies for HSV-2 infection are needed to achieve the goals of the World Health Organization global strategy for the prevention and control of sexually transmitted infections.

METHODS:

We assessed the effectiveness of pericoital tenofovir gel, an antiviral microbicide, in preventing HSV-2 acquisition in a subgroup of 422 HSV-2-negative women enrolled in the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) 004 study, a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Incident HSV-2 cases were identified by evidence of seroconversion on an HSV-2 IgG enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay between study enrollment and exit. A confirmatory analysis was performed by Western blot testing.

RESULTS:

The HSV-2 incidence rate was 10.2 cases per 100 person-years (95% confidence interval [CI], 6.8 to 14.7) among 202 women assigned to tenofovir gel, as compared with 21.0 cases per 100 person-years (95% CI, 16.0 to 27.2) among 222 women assigned to placebo gel (incidence rate ratio, 0.49; 95% CI, 0.30 to 0.77; P=0.003). The HSV-2 incidence rate among the 25 women with vaginal tenofovir concentrations of 10,000 ng per milliliter or more was 5.7 cases per 100 person-years, as compared with 15.5 cases per 100 person-years among the 103 women with no detectable vaginal tenofovir (incidence rate ratio, 0.37; 95% CI, 0.04 to 1.51; P=0.14). As confirmed by Western blot testing, there were 16 HSV-2 seroconversions among women assigned to tenofovir gel as compared with 36 among those assigned to the placebo gel (incidence rate ratio, 0.45; 95% CI, 0.23 to 0.82; P=0.005).

CONCLUSIONS:

In this study in South Africa, pericoital application of tenofovir gel reduced HSV-2 acquisition in women. (Funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development and others; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00441298.).

PMID:
26244306
PMCID:
PMC4562018
DOI:
10.1056/NEJMoa1410649
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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