Home » Breaking News, Health » Doctors Say Truvada is Not HIV – Vaccine

By Jane Nambi

Ugandan doctors have come out to dispute reports that Truvada is an HIV – vaccine after rumors circulated around that an HIV cure drug and vaccine has been found.

US-based Food and Drug Administration came to the country and approved Truvada as a possible prevention of HIV. However, doctors have said it is not a vaccine and people should take care still.

Prof Pontiano Kaleebu, director of the Uganda Virus Research Institute in Entebbe, said Truvada is not an HIV vaccine but an anti-retro viral drug. “No HIV vaccine has yet been discovered. There are, however, ongoing studies and efforts to discover a vaccine,” he said.

Dr Patrick Ndase, the Ugandan HIV prevention research expert at the University of Washington emphasized that there was no vaccine for HIV yet. “It most certainly is not a vaccine. The concept studied is the use of an anti-retroviral drug for HIV prevention similar to the approach used for prevention of mother-to-child transmission,” he said. “There is no vaccine and clearly no clear timeframe can even be put to hopes of ever getting a vaccine against HIV, but the hope is alive,” he added.

Research has proved that truvada reduces the risk of infection by up to 42% in gay and bisexual men and 75% in heterosexual couples according to the AIDS Research Alliance.

Scientists say that Truvada does not offer 100% protection against HIV. For the drug to give protection at some level, an HIV negative person would have to take it daily.