For years, the road toward development of a safe, effective anti-HIV microbicide seemingly has been strewn with disappointment and setbacks. Nonoxynol-9, the spermicide heralded as a promising vaginal microbicide, fell by the wayside after a number of animal and clinical studies produced conflicting or negative results. Few other compounds were under active development, research funding was scarce, and pharmaceutical manufacturers were less than eager to leap into the field.
But after a trip back to the proverbial drawing board, experts say there is reason for optimism that a safe, effective topical anti-HIV microbicide will be developed and licensed in the not-too-distant future.
Voelker R. Anti-HIV Microbicide Efforts Press On. JAMA. 2006;296(7):753-755. doi:10.1001/jama.296.7.753