Despite linkurl:promising early trial results,; another microbicide for the prevention of HIV transmission was deemed ineffective, scientists at the UK Medical Research Council's Microbicides Development Programme (MDP) linkurl:announced; Monday (December 14). The failure of the PRO 2000 gel is part of a decade-long history of unsuccessful attempts to develop vaginal microbicides, which many researchers see as the most effective way to protect women from HIV infection in the developing world.
HIV budding from infected host cell
Image: NIH
linkurl:PRO 2000; was the largest international clinical microbicide trial to date, involving 9,385 women at six research centers in South Africa, Tanzania, Uganda, and Zambia. The placebo-controlled trial was carried out between September 2005 and September 2009. The polymer gel, provided by Endo Pharmaceuticals, was intended to disrupt HIV's interactions with its target cells. But scientists found that the risk of HIV infection for women using PRO 2000 was not significantly different...

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