A new study by investigators has revealed that there is a growing resistance to the antiretroviral drug, tenofovir (Viread) with the group terming the trend “surprising and alarming”.
The researchers say their fear is based on the fact that the drug plays a major role in treating and preventing infection with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
Dr. Ravi Gupta, study author from the Department of Infection and Immunity at University College, London in England, said; “Tenofovir is a critical part of our armamentarium against HIV, so it is extremely concerning to see such a high level of resistance to this drug.”
Continuing, Gupta revealed that; “It is very potent drug with few side effects, and there aren’t any good alternatives that can be deployed using a public health approach. Tenofovir is used not only to treat HIV but also to prevent it in high-risk groups, so we urgently need to do more to combat the problem of emerging resistance.”
The said resistance often occurs when patients don’t take their drugs as directed. To prevent resistance, people need to take the drugs correctly about 85 percent to 90 percent of the time.
The investigators estimated that in sub-Saharan Africa, the percentage of HIV patients that will resist
administration of tenofovir-based drug for the treatment of the virus is put at 15%.
They also fear that the efforts to curtail the global spread of HIV may be weakened especially because tenofovir-resistant HIV strains could be passed on to other people and become more widespread.
But Gupta said the fear that the drug-resistant strains could spread is not the case at this time.
“We found that virus levels were no lower in individuals with the resistant strain and were high enough to be fully infectious. We certainly cannot dismiss the possibility that resistant strains can spread between people and should not be complacent. We are now conducting further studies to get a more detailed picture of how tenofovir resistant viruses develop and spread,” he concluded.
Findings from the study were published Jan. 28 in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.webmd.com
RipplesNigeria …without borders, without fears
Join the conversation
Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism
Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.
As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.
If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.
Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.
SPECIAL REPORT: Illegal miners degrade Ekiti community, engage in child labour
The activities of illegal miners in a community in Ekiti State have caused degradation of the environment, as miners engage...
SPECIAL REPORT: Inside the illegal trading of forest woods in Cross River community
“With a N20,000 bribe, an external buyer can influence the youth in host communities , Cross River State, to cut...
SPECIAL REPORT: Enugu govt watches as waste takes over state, threatens public health, environment
In this report, Arinze Chijioke looks at how delays in evacuation of waste in Enugu State encourages indiscriminate waste disposal, its health implications, and how...
INVESTIGATION: NDDC awards N1bn road contract to poultry farm
The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) in what appears a breach of procurement laws, awarded a contract worth N1.028 billion...
FEATURE… Hard job, low income: Agony of Nigerian commercial drivers
Amid increase in fuel price over the years, coupled with bad roads and insecurity in Nigeria, many commercial drivers have...