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AFRO-NETS> Over-The-Counter Lubricants Fight HIV in Lab Test
- Subject: AFRO-NETS> Over-The-Counter Lubricants Fight HIV in Lab Test
- From: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Date: Fri, 17 Aug 2001 03:13:35 -0400 (EDT)
Over-The-Counter Lubricants Fight HIV in Lab Test
By Karla Gale of Reuter Health
NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Three widely available, inexpensive per-
sonal lubricants have been found to block the replication of the hu-
man immunodeficiency virus in lab tests. The lubricants killed HIV
infected white blood cells and HIV in seminal fluid, according to re-
searchers from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston.
Dr. Samuel Baron and colleagues conducted the study to examine over-
the-counter vaginal preparations for their ability to inhibit HIV
While the spermicide nonoxynol-9 has been found in lab tests to fight
HIV, it doesn't prevent the virus from spreading, probably because it
causes genital irritation, the authors note in the July 20th issue of
AIDS (news - web sites) Research and Human Retroviruses. For this
reason, the researchers only looked at non-irritating lubricants.
Astroglide vaginal lubricant, ViAmor vaginal moisturizer and Vagisil
vaginal moisturizer each inhibited HIV production by more than 1,000-
fold when mixed in test tubes with cells contained in semen. When the
preparations were mixed with cell-free semen containing the virus,
they cut HIV replication eightfold.
Inactivation of the virus began within 5 minutes after the prepara-
tions were added, and the lubricants remained active for more than 8
hours at human body temperature. When layered over cells, the lubri-
cants were still able to kill, indicating that their protective ac-
tivity can diffuse into seminal fluid. The lubricants were still ac-
tive when diluted in a one-to-four ratio.
Since submission of their report, the investigators have identified
two components that are responsible for the inhibitory effects, Baron
told Reuters Health. These components appear to interact with the
lipid or fatty membrane that surrounds both the virus and the in-
fected cells, he said.
``These materials we have identified are by the most stringent stan-
dards safe, falling in the Food and Drug Administration (news - web
sites)'s No. 1 safety category,'' Baron noted. ``This separates them
out completely from nonoxynol-9.''
He cautions that condoms remain the recommended method for preventing
HIV transmission during sexual activity. However, Baron and his col-
leagues highly recommend that field trials of these agents be con-
ducted among people at risk.
SOURCE: AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses 2001;17:997-1002.
Dr Brian Pazvakavambwa, MBChB, MPH
The World Health Organization (WHO)
Department of HIV/AIDS
Global and Inter-Regional Coordination
20 Avenue Appia, CH-1211 Geneva 27
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