HIV Genotype Test Shows Benefit

Drug selection based on genotyping of HIV seems to improve long term treatment outcomes for HIV/AIDS patients, according to the VIRADAPT study sponsored by Visible Genetics, Inc. (700 Bay St., Toronto, Ontario M5G 1Z6, Canada; Tel: 416/813-3240, Fax: 416/813-3250). Results of the study were presented at the 3rd International Workshop on Drug Resistance and Treatment Outcomes (San Diego, CA). The study was conducted by Pierre Dellamonica (Centre Hospitalier, Universite de Nice, France). Genotyping identifies the drug resistance characteristics of the HIV strain infecting a particular individual. The test informs doctors which drugs are unlikely to be effective in reducing the viral load of the patient. VIRADAPT made use of Visible Genetics’ TruGene HIV- Genotyping assay and the OpenGene automated genotyping system.

The VIRADAPT study compared drug selection based on genotyping versus standard of care (SOC) three drug cocktail selection practices. Patients enrolled in the study had high viral loads (averaging more than 10,000 copies/ml), had failed triple drug therapy at least once, and were taking at least one protease inhibitor.

At 12 months, 28.4% of the genotyped patients had undetectable HIV levels in their blood (<200 copies/ml), about the same as at six months. At six months, 14% of the SOC patients had undetectable levels. Because genotyping had already achieved statistical significance, the SOC patients were then genotyped. After six months, 25.7% of the patients had undetectable levels.

“We are pleased and excited with the 12-month VIRADAPT follow-up data,” says John Stevens, chair and CEO of Visible Genetics. “These are the first pilot results to demonstrate that genotyping may have a long-term clinical value.”

COPYRIGHT 1999 Business Communications Company, Inc.

COPYRIGHT 2004 Gale Group

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