Potential effectiveness of long-acting injectable pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV prevention in men who have sex with men: a modelling study.


We used an agent-based model to simulate HIV transmission in a dynamic network of 11 245 MSM in Atlanta, GA, USA. We used raw data from studies in macaque models and pharmacokinetic data from safety trials to estimate the time-varying efficacy of long-acting injectable PrEP. The effect of long-acting injectable PrEP on the cumulative number of new HIV infections over 10 years (2015-24) was compared with no PrEP and daily oral PrEP across a range of coverage levels. Sensitivity analyses were done with varying maximum efficacy and drug half-life values.

Long-acting injectable PrEP has the potential to produce larger reductions in HIV transmission in MSM than oral PrEP. However, the real-world, population-level impact of this approach will depend on uptake of this prevention method and its effectiveness, as well as retention of patients in clinical care.

National Institute on Drug Abuse and National Institute of Mental Health.

In the absence of PrEP, the model predicted 2374 new HIV infections (95% simulation interval [SI] 2345-2412) between 2015 and 2024. The cumulative number of new HIV infections was reduced in all scenarios in which MSM received long-acting injectable PrEP compared with oral PrEP. At a coverage level of 35%, compared with no PrEP, long-acting injectable PrEP led to a 44% reduction in new HIV infections (1044 new infections averted [95% SI 1018-1077]) versus 33% (792 infections averted [763-821]) for oral PrEP. The relative benefit of long-acting injectable PrEP was sensitive to the assumed efficacy of injections received every 8 weeks, discontinuation rates, and terminal drug half-life.

Oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) prevents HIV infection in men who have sex with men (MSM); however, adherence is an ongoing concern. Long-acting injectable PrEP is being tested in phase 3 trials and could address challenges associated with adherence. We examined the potential effectiveness of long-acting injectable PrEP compared with oral PrEP in MSM.

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