MONDAY, Aug. 27 (HealthDay News) — A new pill to treat HIV infection that combines four medicines and only has to be taken once a day was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday.
Stribild, which will be marketed by maker Gilead Sciences, contains the HIV drugs elvitegravir, cobicistat, emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate. It will be prescribed to people who have never been treated for HIV infection, the agency said in a statement.
Two of the drugs, elvitegravir and cobicistat, are new, the FDA noted. Elvitegravir interferes with one of the enzymes that HIV needs to multiply, while cobicistat inhibits an enzyme that metabolizes certain HIV drugs and so prolongs the effect of elvitegravir. The combination of emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil fumarate is already marketed as Truvada, and they work in concert to block another enzyme that HIV needs to replicate.
"Through continued research and drug development, treatment for those infected with HIV has evolved from multi-pill regimens to single-pill regimens," Dr. Edward Cox, director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products in FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in the agency statement. "New combination HIV drugs like Stribild help simplify treatment regimens."
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