HIV-1 treatment as prevention: The good, the bad, and the challenges

Kumi Smith, Kimberly A. Powers, Angela D.M. Kashuba, Myron S. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: This work focuses on the use of antiretroviral agents to prevent the sexual transmission of HIV-1. RECENT FINDINGS: Two randomized clinical trials demonstrated that antiretroviral agents provided before exposure to HIV-1 offer substantial protection, ostensibly directly proportional to the concentration of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in the genital secretions. Intense focus on the use of HIV treatment as prevention has led to publication of modeling exercises, ecological studies, and observational studies, most of which support the potential benefits of ART. However, the logistical requirements for successful use of ART for prevention are considerable. SUMMARY: ART will serve as a cornerstone of combination prevention of HIV-1. Continued research will be essential to measure anticipated benefits and to detect implementation barriers and untoward consequences of such a program, especially increases in primary ART resistance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)315-325
Number of pages11
JournalCurrent Opinion in HIV and AIDS
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • antiretroviral therapy
  • pre-exposure prophylaxis
  • prevention


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