Reduce belly fat
This past November, the FDA approved Egrifta (tesamorelin). Egrifta injections are the first effective treatment for visceral adipose tissue (VAT)—deep belly fat around the liver, stomach and other abdominal organs—a disfiguring, often painful form of lipodystrophy that’s still common among positive people.
Prevent anal cancer
Gardasil, already approved to prevent cervical cancer in girls and young women, and genital warts in young adults and children, now has FDA approval to prevent anal cancer in young people of all sexes, ages 9 to 26. The vaccine targets certain cancer-causing types of human papillomavirus (HPV) and only works in people who haven’t yet acquired those cancer-causing forms of HPV.
Clear hepatitis C
Telaprevir, the first protease inhibitor (PI) for treatment of hepatitis C, awaits FDA approval. The PI has proved effective for people with hard-to-treat hep C genotype 1. In trials, adding telaprevir to standard hep C treatment (pegylated interferon plus ribavirin) shortened treatment time and cleared the virus in people who had previously failed to do so.
Although the original clinical trials did not include people coinfected with HIV, several preliminary studies do, and telaprevir is expected to be effective (and not to interfere with HIV meds) in coinfected people.
Crofelemer, a compound made from the plant sangre de grado, or dragon’s blood, has shown it can alleviate HIV-related diarrhea. The drug is currently in late-stage clinical trials, and its manufacturer, Napo Pharmaceuticals, could seek approval from the FDA this year.