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Expert Rev Clin Pharmacol. 2017 Jan;10(1):59-79. doi: 10.1080/17512433.2017.1246180. Epub 2016 Oct 24.

Drug interactions in HIV treatment: complementary & alternative medicines and over-the-counter products.

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a Clinical Pharmacokinetics Research Unit, Clinical Center Pharmacy Department , National Institutes of Health , Bethesda , MD , USA.


Use of complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs) and over-the-counter (OTC) medications are very common among HIV-infected patients. These products can cause clinically significant drug-drug interactions (DDIs) with antiretroviral (ARV) medications, thereby increasing risk for negative outcomes such as toxicity or loss of virologic control. Areas covered: This article provides an updated review of the different mechanisms by which CAM and OTC products are implicated in DDIs with ARV medications. Expert commentary: Much of the literature published to date involves studies of CAMs interacting with older ARV agents via the cytochrome P450 (CYP450) system. However, the HIV treatment and prevention arsenal is continually evolving. Furthermore, our elucidation of the role of non-CYP450 mediated DDIs with ARV medications is greatly increasing. Therefore, clinicians are well served to understand the various mechanisms and extent by which new ARV therapies may be involved in drug interactions with CAMs and OTC medications.


Antiretrovirals; HIV; complementary and alternative medicines (CAMs); drug interactions; herbals; over-the-counter (OTC); pharmacokinetics; supplements

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