Truvada, the first drug shown to drastically reduce the spread of HIV, was approved by the Food and Drug Administration today as a successful preventative measure for people at high risk of contracting the virus.
Produced by Foster City-based biotech company Gilead Sciences Inc., Truvada has been shown to reduce the transmission of infection by 75 percent between heterosexual couples when one partner was already infected with HIV, the press reports. Another study found a 42 percent reduction in the spread of HIV among gay and bisexual men willing to take a daily dose in addition to utilizing condoms and counseling services.
One glitch in the study: There was no evidence of a decrease in condom use among the couples who participated in the clinical trials. Thus far, condoms have been shown to be the most effective used to prevent the spread of HIV. Some people worry that Truvada might discourage people from using condoms, or give a false sense of security.