The current crop of long-acting antiretrovirals (ARVs) in development, which aim to require only monthly or quarterly dosing, could improve life expectancy among people with HIV, especially those with low adherence to daily regimens, reports. Investigators used a mathematical model to project the various impacts of long-acting ARVs in three scenarios: as the first-line therapy among treatment-naive people with HIV; as a second-line therapy for those who had failed their first-line treatment; and for those who have failed multiple regimens based on non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) and protease inhibitors (PIs). The investigators presented their findings at the IDWeek 2013 conference in San Francisco.

The researchers found that long-acting ARVs would increase overall life expectancy by 0.5 to 0.6 years when compared with standard ARVs. Among those with low adherence to standard ARVs, treatment with long-acting drugs by comparison would increase life expectancy by two to three years.

Long-acting treatment was only cost effective among those who had failed multiple regimens, at $86,000 per quality adjusted life year. Giving the long-acting therapies to those with lowered adherence, however, increased its cost effectiveness in comparison with the cost-effectiveness for those with high adherence.

To read the IDWeek abstract, click here.

To read the HIVandHepatitis story, click here.