Rings and More: Finding New Ways to Prevent HIV

NIAID Now | November 28, 2017

A two-drug regimen is currently available to people who seek to protect themselves from HIV infection. The anti-HIV medication called Truvada, an oral tablet that contains the two drugs tenofovir and emtricitabine, is currently licensed for HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). When taken daily, Truvada can greatly reduce the risk for acquiring HIV infection. Also, a short course of anti-HIV drugs known as post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) can prevent HIV from establishing itself in the body if begun within three days of exposure to the virus and taken daily for 28 days.

While these tools can be very effective, they may not be best for every person or every situation. Adhering to a daily pill regimen can be challenging and does not necessarily fit into the lives of everyone who seeks to protect themselves from HIV. Also, some people may prefer an HIV prevention product that is longer acting and potentially more discreet than a daily pill.

To make additional HIV prevention options a reality, NIAID supports research on a variety of innovative, long-acting HIV prevention products that could be inserted in the vagina, injected or implanted from once a month to once a year by people who commit to use them on an ongoing basis. These products include a vaginal ring that also delivers contraception. The infographic below provides a snapshot of this research program.

Long-Acting Forms HIV Prevention

You may download a PDF of the infographic for printing. To print, after downloading the PDF, select “fit to page” in printer settings. Larger paper sizes will yield best results. For web posting, the NIAID Flickr site offers a high-resolution JPEG.

Content last reviewed on November 28, 2017