Cotrimoxazole is widely prescribed to treat a range of infections and for
HIV-infected individuals it is administered as prophylaxis to protect against
opportunistic infections. Some reports suggest that fetuses exposed to cotrimoxazole
during early pregnancy may have an increased risk of congenital anomalies. We carried
out this systematic review in order to update the evidence of cotrimoxazole safety in
Three databases and one conference abstract site were searched in duplicate up
to 31 October, 2013 for studies reporting adverse maternal and infant outcomes among
women receiving cotrimoxazole during pregnancy. This search was updated in MEDLINE via
PUBMED to 28 April 2014. Studies were included irrespective of HIV-infection status or
the presence of other co-infections. Our primary outcome was birth defects of any kind.
Secondary outcomes included spontaneous abortions, terminations of pregnancy,
stillbirths, preterm deliveries, and drug-associated toxicity.
24 studies were included for review. There were 232 infants with congenital
anomalies among 4196 women receiving cotrimoxazole during pregnancy, giving an overall
pooled prevalence of 3.5% (95% CI 1.8–5.1%;
τ2 0.03). Three studies reported 31 infants with neural tube
defects, giving a crude prevalence of 0.7% (95%CI
0.5–1.0%) with most data (29 neural tube defects) coming from a single
study. The majority of adverse drug reactions were mild. The quality of the evidence was
The findings of this review support continued recommendations for cotrimoxazole
as a priority intervention for HIV-infected pregnant women. It is critical to improve
data collection on maternal and infant outcomes.
birth defects; congenital anomalies; cotrimoxazole; HIV/AIDS; pregnancy
Data describing the pharmacokinetics and safety of tenofovir in neonates are lacking.
HPTN 057 was a phase 1, open label study of the pharmacokinetics and safety of tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) in HIV infected women during labor and their infants during the first week of life with 4 dosing cohorts: maternal 600 mg doses/no infant dosing; no maternal dosing/infant 4 mg/kg doses day 0, 3 and 5; maternal 900 mg doses/infant 6 mg/kg doses day 0, 3 and 5; maternal 600 mg doses/infant 6 mg/kg doses daily ×7 doses. Pharmacokinetic sampling was performed on cohort 1 and 3 mothers and all infants. Plasma, amniotic fluid and breast milk tenofovir concentrations were determined by liquid chromatographic – tandem mass spectrometric assay. The pharmacokinetic target was for infant tenofovir concentration throughout the first week of life to exceed 50 ng/mL, the median trough tenofovir concentration in adults receiving standard chronic TDF dosing.
122 mother-infant pairs from Malawi and Brazil were studied. Tenofovir exposure in mothers receiving 600 mg and 900 mg exceeded that in non-pregnant adults receiving standard 300 mg doses. Tenofovir elimination in the infants was equivalent to that in older children and adults and trough tenofovir plasma concentrations exceeded 50 ng/mL in 74–97% of infants receiving daily dosing.
A TDF dosing regimen of 600 mg during labor and daily infant doses of 6 mg/kg maintains infant tenofovir plasma concentration above 50 ng/mL throughout the first week of life and should be used in studies of TDF efficacy for HIV PMTCT and early infant treatment.
tenofovir; neonate; pharmacokinetics
Tenofovir is associated with renal proximal tubule injury. Such toxicity has not been extensively studied in HIV-1-infected children, in whom tenofovir is increasingly used.
History, urine and blood were collected at regular intervals from 448 children and adolescents with perinatal HIV-1 infection followed in the Pediatric HIV/AIDS Cohort study. Relationships between tenofovir use and proteinuria and chronic kidney disease (CKD) outcomes were examined using multivariable logistic regression models. Proteinuria was defined as at least one urine protein/creatinine ratio (uPCR) ≥0.2, and CKD as ≥2 sequential uPCR ≥0.2 or estimated glomerular filtration rates (eGFR) <60 mL/min/1.73 m2 with no subsequent resolution, or a clinical diagnosis not contradicted by a normal uPCR. Subjects with ≥2 uPCR <0.2, and no abnormal uPCR and eGFR comprised the comparison group.
Subjects were 47% male, 72% black, 24% Hispanic, with entry mean age (±standard deviation) of 11.5±2.5 years. Proteinuria prevalence at entry, and annually during 3 years, ranged from 10.3%–13.7%. The cumulative prevalence of proteinuria was 22% (94/434, 95% CI: 18%–26%) and CKD 4.5% (20/448, 95% CI: 2.7%–6.8%). Duration of tenofovir use was an independent predictor of proteinuria, with >3 years of exposure having the highest risk compared with no exposure (OR: 2.53, 95% CI: 1.23- 5.22, overall p=0.01). Overall, duration of tenofovir use did not significantly predict the presence of CKD.
Rates of proteinuria and CKD were lower than those seen in the pre-HAART era. However, prolonged exposure to tenofovir increases risk of renal injury.
Tenofovir; proteinuria; chronic kidney disease; proximal tubules; nephrotoxicity; urine protein/creatinine ratio
We previously reported similar AIDS-free survival at 3 years in children who were >1 year old initiating antiretroviral therapy (ART) and randomized to early vs. deferred ART in the PREDICT Study. We now report neurodevelopmental outcomes.
284 HIV-infected Thai and Cambodian children aged 1–12 years with CD4 counts between 15–24% and no AIDS-defining illness were randomized to initiate ART at enrollment (“early”, n=139) or when CD4 count became <15% or a CDC C event developed (“deferred”, n=145). All underwent age-appropriate neurodevelopment testing including Beery Visual Motor Integration (VMI), Purdue Pegboard, Color Trails and Child Behavioral Checklist (CBCL). Thai children (n=170) also completed Wechsler Intelligence Scale (IQ) and Stanford Binet Memory test. We compared week 144 measures by randomized group and to HIV-uninfected children (n=319).
At week 144, the median age was 9 years and 69 (48%) of the deferred arm children had initiated ART. The early arm had a higher CD4 (33% vs. 24%, p<0.001) and a greater percentage of children with viral suppression (91% vs. 40%, p<0.001). Neurodevelopmental scores did not differ by arm and there were no differences in changes between arms across repeated assessments in time-varying multivariate models. HIV-infected children performed worse than uninfected children on IQ, Beery VMI, Binet memory and CBCL
In HIV-infected children surviving beyond one year of age without ART, neurodevelopmental outcomes were similar with ART initiation at CD4 15–24% vs. < 15%; but both groups performed worse than HIV-uninfected children. The window of opportunity for a positive effect of ART initiation on neurodevelopment may remain in infancy.
HIV; Children; ART; neurodevelopment; resource-limited settings
Lynne Mofenson and Heather Watts discuss the context and implications of the study by J. Sibuide and colleagues, which provides a detailed analysis of birth defects in infants with in utero antiretroviral drug exposure in the French Perinatal Cohort.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
Yegor Voronin and colleagues explore how monoclonal antibodies against HIV could provide a new opportunity to further reduce mother-to-child transmission of HIV and propose that new interventions should consider issues related to implementation, feasibility, and access.
Please see later in the article for the Editors' Summary
The HPTN 046 trial evaluated the efficacy of extended infant nevirapine (NVP) administration for prevention of HIV transmission through breastfeeding. Infants received daily NVP to 6 weeks of age. HIV-uninfected infants (the intent-to-treat group) received daily NVP or placebo up to 6 months of age. We analyzed emergence of NVP resistance in infants who acquired HIV-infection despite prophylaxis.
HIV genotyping was performed using the ViroSeq HIV Genotyping System. Medians and proportions were used to summarize data. Two-sided Fisher’s exact tests were used to evaluate associations between categorical variables.
NVP resistance was detected in 12 (92.3%) of 13 infants who were HIV-infected by 6 weeks and in seven (28%) of 25 infants who were HIV-uninfected at 6 weeks and HIV-infected at 6 months of age (6/8=75% in the NVP arm, 1/17=5.9% in the placebo arm, P=0.001). Among those 25 infants, 4 had mothers who initiated an antiretroviral (ARV) treatment regimen by 6 months postpartum. In all 4 cases, the treatment regimen included a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NVP or efavirenz). NVP resistance was detected in all four of those infants by 6 months of age (4/4=100%). In contrast, only three (14.2%) of the remaining 21 HIV-infected infants whose mothers did not initiate ARV treatment developed NVP resistance (P=0.003).
Extended NVP prophylaxis significantly increased the risk of NVP resistance in infants who acquired HIV infection after 6 weeks of age. Treatment of maternal HIV infection was also associated with emergence of NVP resistance in HIV-infected, breastfed infants.
Nevirapine resistance; prevention of mother-to-child transmission; extended nevirapine; HIV
Background. Use of antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) during pregnancy has been associated with higher risk of preterm birth.
Methods. The Pediatric HIV/AIDS Cohort Study network's Surveillance Monitoring for ART Toxicities study is a US-based cohort of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)–exposed uninfected children. We evaluated maternal ARV use during pregnancy and the risk of any type of preterm birth (ie, birth before 37 completed weeks of gestation), the risk of spontaneous preterm birth (ie, preterm birth that occurred after preterm labor or membrane rupture, without other complications), and the risk of small for gestational age (SGA; ie, a birth weight of <10th percentile for gestational age). Multivariable logistic regression models were used to evaluate the association of ARVs and timing of exposure, while adjusting for maternal characteristics.
Results. Among 1869 singleton births, 18.6% were preterm, 10.2% were spontaneous preterm, and 7.3% were SGA. A total of 89% used 3-drug combination ARV regimens during pregnancy. In adjusted models, the odds of preterm birth and spontaneous preterm birth were significantly greater among mothers who used protease inhibitors during the first trimester (adjusted odds ratios, 1.55 and 1.59, respectively) but not among mothers who used nonnucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitor or triple-nucleoside regimens during the first trimester. Combination ARV exposure starting later in pregnancy was not associated with increased risk. No associations were observed between SGA and exposure to combination ARV regimens.
Conclusions. Protease inhibitor use early in pregnancy may be associated with increased risk for prematurity.
preterm birth; antiretrovirals; pregnancy; small for gestational age
We investigated 18-month incidence and determinants of death and loss-to-follow-up of children after antiretroviral therapy (ART) initiation in a multiregional collaboration in lower-income countries.
HIV-infected children (positive PCR <18 months or positive serology ≥18 months) from IeDEA cohorts, <16 years, initiating ART were eligible. A competing risk regression model was used to analyze the independent risk of two failure types: death and loss-to-follow-up (>6 months).
Data on 13611 children, from Asia (N=1454), East-Africa (N=3114), Southern-Africa (N=6212) and West-Africa (N=2881) contributed 20,417 person-years of follow-up. At 18 months, the adjusted risk of death was 4.3% in East-Africa, 5.4% in Asia, 5.7% in Southern-Africa and 7.4% in West-Africa (P=0.01). Age<24 months, WHO stage 4, CD4<10%, attending a private sector clinic, larger cohort size and living in West-Africa were independently associated with poorer survival. The adjusted risk of loss-to-follow-up was 4.1% in Asia, 9.0% in Southern-Africa, 14.0% in East-Africa, and 21.8% in West-Africa (P <0.01). Age<12 months, non NNRTI-based ART regimen, WHO stage 4 at ART start, ART initiation after 2005, attending a public sector or a non-urban clinic, having to pay for laboratory tests or antiretroviral drugs, larger cohort size, and living in East or West-Africa were significantly associated with higher loss-to-follow-up.
Findings differed substantially across regions but raise overall concerns about delayed ART start, low access to free HIV-services for children, and increased workload on program retention in lower-income countries. Universal free access to ART services and innovative approaches are urgently needed to improve pediatric outcomes at program level.
antiretroviral therapy; children; cohort studies; HIV infection; mortality; loss to follow-up; low income countries; Asia; Africa
A pooled analysis of individual data from >5000 human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1)–infected mothers and their infants from Africa and India who participated in 5 randomized trials shows that extended prophylaxis with nevirapine or with nevirapine and zidovudine significantly reduces postnatal HIV-1 infection.
Background. In resource-limited settings, mothers infected with human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) face a difficult choice: breastfeed their infants but risk transmitting HIV-1 or not breastfeed their infants and risk the infants dying of other infectious diseases or malnutrition. Recent results from observational studies and randomized clinical trials indicate daily administration of nevirapine to the infant can prevent breast-milk HIV-1 transmission.
Methods. Data from 5396 mother-infant pairs who participated in 5 randomized trials where the infant was HIV-1 negative at birth were pooled to estimate the efficacy of infant nevirapine prophylaxis to prevent breast-milk HIV-1 transmission. Four daily regimens were compared: nevirapine for 6 weeks, 14 weeks, or 28 weeks, or nevirapine plus zidovudine for 14 weeks.
Results. The estimated 28-week risk of HIV-1 transmission was 5.8% (95% confidence interval [CI], 4.3%–7.9%) for the 6-week nevirapine regimen, 3.7% (95% CI, 2.5%–5.4%) for the 14-week nevirapine regimen, 4.8% (95% CI, 3.5%–6.7%) for the 14-week nevirapine plus zidovudine regimen, and 1.8% (95% CI, 1.0%–3.1%) for the 28-week nevirapine regimen (log-rank test for trend, P < .001). Cox regression models with nevirapine as a time-varying covariate, stratified by trial site and adjusted for maternal CD4 cell count and infant birth weight, indicated that nevirapine reduces the rate of HIV-1 infection by 71% (95% CI, 58%–80%; P < .001) and reduces the rate of HIV infection or death by 58% (95% CI, 45%–69%; P < .001).
Conclusions. Extended prophylaxis with nevirapine or with nevirapine and zidovudine significantly reduces postnatal HIV-1 infection. Longer duration of prophylaxis results in a greater reduction in the risk of infection.
breast milk; HIV; nevirapine
The optimum time to start antiretroviral therapy for children diagnosed with HIV infection after 1 year of age is unknown. We assessed whether antiretroviral therapy could be deferred until CD4 percentages declined to less than 15% without affecting AIDS-free survival.
In our multicentre, randomised, open-label trial at nine research sites in Thailand and Cambodia, we enrolled children aged 1–12 years who were infected with HIV and had CD4 percentages of 15–24%. Participants were randomly assigned (1:1) by a minimisation scheme to start antiretroviral therapy at study entry (early treatment group) or antiretroviral therapy to start when CD4 percentages declined to less than 15% (deferred treatment group). The primary endpoint was AIDS-free survival (based on US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention category C events) at week 144, assessed with the Kaplan-Meier analysis and the log-rank approach. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00234091.
Between March 28, 2006, and Sept 10, 2008, we enrolled 300 Thai and Cambodian children infected with HIV, with a median age of 6·4 years (IQR 3·9–8·4). 150 children were randomly allocated early antiretroviral therapy (one participant was excluded from analyses after withdrawing before week 0) and 150 children were randomly allocated deferred antiretroviral therapy. Median baseline CD4 percentage was 19% (16–22%). 69 children (46%) in the deferred treatment group started antiretroviral therapy during the study. AIDS-free survival at week 144 in the deferred treatment group was 98·7% (95% CI 94·7–99·7; 148 of 150 patients) compared with 97·9% (93·7–99·3; 146 of 149 patients) in the early treatment group (p=0·6).
AIDS-free survival in both treatment groups was high. This low event rate meant that our study was underpowered to detect differences between treatment start times and thus additional follow-up of study participants or future studies are needed to answer this clinical question.
US National Institutes of Health, Division of AIDS; National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; National Institute of Child Health and Human Development; and National Institute of Mental Health.
First-line antiretroviral treatment regimens in resource-limited settings used in breastfeeding mothers often include stavudine (d4T). Limited data describing d4T concentrations in breast milk are available. We analyzed d4T concentrations in 52 mother-infant pairs using ultra-performance liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (lower limit of quantification: 5 ng/ml in plasma, 20 ng/ml in breast milk). Median (interquartile range) d4T concentrations were 86 (36–191) ng/ml in maternal plasma, 151 (48–259) ng/ml in whole milk, 190 (58–296) ng/ml in skim milk, and <5 (<5-<5) ng/ml in infant plasma. While d4T is concentrated in breast milk relative to maternal plasma, the infant d4T dose received from breast milk is very small and not clinically significant.
stavudine concentrations; breast milk; mother-to-child transmission; HIV
The great success in the prevention and treatment of pediatric HIV in high resource countries, and now in low resource countries, has changed the face of the HIV epidemic in children from one of near certain mortality to that of a chronic disease. However, these successes pose new challenges as perinatally HIV-infected youth survive into adulthood. Increased survival of HIV-infected children is associated with challenges in maintaining adherence to what is likely life-long therapy, and in selecting successive antiretroviral drug regimens, given the limited availability of pediatric formulations, limitations in pharmacokinetic and safety data of drugs in children, and the development of extensive drug resistance in multi-drug-experienced children. Pediatric HIV care must now focus on morbidity related to long-term HIV infection and its treatment. Survival into adulthood of perinatally HIV-infected youth in high resource countries provides important lessons about how the epidemic will change with increasing access to antiretroviral therapy for children in low resource countries. This series of papers will focus on issues related to management of perinatally infected youth and young adults.
perinatal HIV infection; adolescents; HIV care
This study evaluated a wide range of viral load (VL) thresholds to identify a cut-point that best predicts new clinical events in children on stable highly-active antiretroviral therapy (HAART).
Cox proportional hazards modeling was used to assess the adjusted risk of World Health Organization stage 3 or 4 clinical events (WHO events) as a function of time-varying CD4, VL, and hemoglobin values in a cohort study of Latin American children on HAART ≥ 6 months. Models were fit using different VL cut-points between 400 and 50,000 copies/mL, with model fit evaluated on the basis of the minimum Akaike Information Criterion (AIC) value, a standard model fit statistic.
Models were based on 67 subjects with WHO events out of 550 subjects on study. The VL cutpoints of > 2600 copies/mL and > 32,000 copies/mL corresponded to the lowest AIC values and were associated with the highest hazard ratios [2.0 (p = 0.015) and 2.1 (p = 0.0058), respectively] for WHO events.
In HIV-infected Latin American children on stable HAART, two distinct VL thresholds (> 2,600 copies/mL and > 32,000 copies/mL) were identified for predicting children at significantly increased risk of HIV-related clinical illness, after accounting for CD4 level, hemoglobin level, and other significant factors.
Pediatric HIV infection; viral load monitoring; viral load threshold; Latin America
BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVE:
The impact of maternal antiretrovirals (ARVs) during pregnancy, labor, and postpartum on infant outcomes is unclear.
Infants born to HIV-infected mothers in ARV studies were followed for 18 months.
Between June 2006 and December 2008, 236 infants enrolled from Africa (n = 36), India (n = 47), Thailand (n = 152), and Brazil (n = 1). Exposure to ARVs in pregnancy included ≥3 ARVs (10%), zidovudine/intrapartum ARV (81%), and intrapartum ARV (9%). There were 4 infant infections (1 in utero, 3 late postpartum) and 4 deaths with 1.8% mortality (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.1%–3.5%) and 96.4% HIV-1–free survival (95% CI, 94.0%–98.9%). Birth weight was ≥2.5 kg in 86%. In the first 6 months, Indian infants (nonbreastfed) had lowest median weights and lengths and smallest increases in growth. After 6 months, African infants had the lowest median weight and weight-for-age z scores. Infants exposed to highest maternal viral load had the lowest height and height-for-age z scores. Serious adverse events occurred in 38% of infants, did not differ by country, and correlated with less maternal ARV exposure. Clinical diagnoses were seen in 84% of Thai, 31% of African, and 9% of Indian infants. Congenital defects/inborn errors of metabolism were seen in 18 (7.6%) infants, of which 17 were Thai (11%: 95% CI, 6.7%–17.0%); none had first trimester ARV exposure.
Infant follow-up in large international cohorts is feasible and provides important safety and HIV transmission data following maternal ARV exposure. Increased surveillance increases identification of congenital/inborn errors.
maternal ARV exposure; infant safety; ARV toxicities; A5190; P1054; MTCT; HIV
To evaluate the association of tenofovir disoproxil fumarate (TDF) use during pregnancy with early growth parameters in HIV-exposed, uninfected (HEU) infants.
US-based prospective cohort study of HEU children to examine potential adverse effects of prenatal TDF exposure.
We evaluated the association of maternal TDF use during pregnancy with small for gestational age (SGA); low birth weight (LBW, <2.5kg); weight-for-age z-scores (WAZ), length-forage z-scores (LAZ) and head circumference-for-age (HCAZ) z-scores at newborn visit; and LAZ, HCAZ, and WAZ at age one year. Logistic regression models for LBW and SGA were fit, adjusting for maternal and sociodemographic factors. Adjusted linear regression models were used to evaluate LAZ, WAZ and HCAZ by TDF exposure.
Of 2029 enrolled children with maternal antiretroviral information, TDF was used by 449 (21%) HIV-infected mothers, increasing from 14% in 2003 to 43% in 2010. There was no difference between those exposed to combination regimens with versus without TDF for SGA, LBW, and newborn LAZ and HCAZ. However, at age one year, infants exposed to combination regimens with TDF had significantly lower adjusted mean LAZ and HCAZ than those without TDF (LAZ: −0.17 vs. −0.03, p=0.04; HCAZ: 0.17 vs. 0.42, p=0.02).
TDF use during pregnancy was not associated with increased risk for LBW or SGA. The slightly lower mean LAZ and HCAZ observed at age one year in TDF-exposed infants are of uncertain significance but underscore the need for additional studies of growth outcomes after TDF use during pregnancy.
Tenofovir disoproxil fumarate; perinatal HIV exposure; infant growth; antiretroviral drugs; pregnancy
There is a critical need for improved diagnosis of tuberculosis in children, particularly in young children with intrathoracic disease as this represents the most common type of tuberculosis in children and the greatest diagnostic challenge. There is also a need for standardized clinical case definitions for the evaluation of diagnostics in prospective clinical research studies that include children in whom tuberculosis is suspected but not confirmed by culture of Mycobacterium tuberculosis. A panel representing a wide range of expertise and child tuberculosis research experience aimed to develop standardized clinical research case definitions for intrathoracic tuberculosis in children to enable harmonized evaluation of new tuberculosis diagnostic technologies in pediatric populations. Draft definitions and statements were proposed and circulated widely for feedback. An expert panel then considered each of the proposed definitions and statements relating to clinical definitions. Formal group consensus rules were established and consensus was reached for each statement. The definitions presented in this article are intended for use in clinical research to evaluate diagnostic assays and not for individual patient diagnosis or treatment decisions. A complementary article addresses methodological issues to consider for research of diagnostics in children with suspected tuberculosis.
Increased use of nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors (NNRTIs) in pregnant and breastfeeding women will result in fewer children infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). However, among children infected despite prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT), a substantial proportion will acquire NNRTI-resistant HIV, potentially compromising response to NNRTI-based antiretroviral therapy (ART). In countries scaling up PMTCT and pediatric ART programs, it is crucial to assess the proportion of young children with drug-resistant HIV to improve health outcomes and support national and global decision making on optimal selection of pediatric first-line ART. This article summarizes a new World Health Organization surveillance protocol to assess resistance using remnant dried blood spot specimens from a representative sample of children aged <18 months being tested for early infant diagnosis.
The Pediatric HIV/AIDS Cohort Study’s Surveillance Monitoring of ART Toxicities Study is a prospective cohort study conducted at 22 US sites between 2007 and 2011 that was designed to evaluate the safety of in utero antiretroviral drug exposure in children not infected with human immunodeficiency virus who were born to mothers who were infected. This ongoing study uses a “trigger-based” design; that is, initial assessments are conducted on all children, and only those meeting certain thresholds or “triggers” undergo more intensive evaluations to determine whether they have had an adverse event (AE). The authors present the estimated rates of AEs for each domain of interest in the Surveillance Monitoring of ART Toxicities Study. They also evaluated the efficiency of this trigger-based design for estimating AE rates and for testing associations between in utero exposures to antiretroviral drugs and AEs. The authors demonstrate that estimated AE rates from the trigger-based design are unbiased after correction for the sensitivity of the trigger for identifying AEs. Even without correcting for bias based on trigger sensitivity, the trigger approach is generally more efficient for estimating AE rates than is evaluating a random sample of the same size. Minor losses in efficiency when comparing AE rates between persons exposed and unexposed in utero to particular antiretroviral drugs or drug classes were observed under most scenarios.
antiretroviral; asymptotic relative efficiency; HIV-exposed; infants; outcome-dependent sampling; safety; surveillance
The safety and efficacy of adding antiretroviral drugs to standard zidovudine prophylaxis in infants of mothers with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection who did not receive antenatal antiretroviral therapy (ART) because of late identification are unclear. We evaluated three ART regimens in such infants.
Within 48 hours after their birth, we randomly assigned formula-fed infants born to women with a peripartum diagnosis of HIV type 1 (HIV-1) infection to one of three regimens: zidovudine for 6 weeks (zidovudine-alone group), zidovudine for 6 weeks plus three doses of nevirapine during the first 8 days of life (two-drug group), or zidovudine for 6 weeks plus nelfinavir and lamivudine for 2 weeks (three-drug group). The primary outcome was HIV-1 infection at 3 months in infants uninfected at birth.
A total of 1684 infants were enrolled in the Americas and South Africa (566 in the zidovudine-alone group, 562 in the two-drug group, and 556 in the three-drug group). The overall rate of in utero transmission of HIV-1 on the basis of Kaplan–Meier estimates was 5.7% (93 infants), with no significant differences among the groups. Intra-partum transmission occurred in 24 infants in the zidovudine-alone group (4.8%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.2 to 7.1), as compared with 11 infants in the two-drug group (2.2%; 95% CI, 1.2 to 3.9; P = 0.046) and 12 in the three-drug group (2.4%; 95% CI, 1.4 to 4.3; P = 0.046). The overall transmission rate was 8.5% (140 infants), with an increased rate in the zidovudine-alone group (P = 0.03 for the comparisons with the two- and three-drug groups). On multivariate analysis, zidovudine monotherapy, a higher maternal viral load, and maternal use of illegal substances were significantly associated with transmission. The rate of neutropenia was significantly increased in the three-drug group (P<0.001 for both comparisons with the other groups).
In neonates whose mothers did not receive ART during pregnancy, prophylaxis with a two- or three-drug ART regimen is superior to zidovudine alone for the prevention of intrapartum HIV transmission; the two-drug regimen has less toxicity than the three-drug regimen. (Funded by the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development [NICHD] and others; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00099359.)
The Post-exposure Prophylaxis in Infants (PEPI)-Malawi trial evaluated infant antiretroviral regimens for prevention of post-natal HIV transmission. A multi-assay algorithm (MAA) that includes the BED capture immunoassay, an avidity assay, CD4 cell count, and viral load was used to identify women who were vs. were not recently infected at the time of enrollment (MAA recent, N = 73; MAA non-recent, N = 2,488); a subset of the women in the MAA non-recent group known to have been HIV infected for at least 2 years before enrollment (known non-recent, N = 54). Antibody maturation and viral diversification were examined in these women.
Samples collected at enrollment (N = 2,561) and 12–24 months later (N = 1,306) were available for serologic analysis using the BED and avidity assays. A subset of those samples was used for analysis of viral diversity, which was performed using a high resolution melting (HRM) diversity assay. Viral diversity analysis was performed using all available samples from women in the MAA recent group (61 enrollment samples, 38 follow-up samples) and the known non-recent group (43 enrollment samples, 22 follow-up samples). Diversity data from PEPI-Malawi were also compared to similar data from 169 adults in the United States (US) with known recent infection (N = 102) and known non-recent infection (N = 67).
In PEPI-Malawi, results from the BED and avidity assays increased over time in the MAA recent group, but did not change significantly in the MAA non-recent group. At enrollment, HIV diversity was lower in the MAA recent group than in the known non-recent group. HRM diversity assay results from women in PEPI-Malawi were similar to those from adults in the US with known duration of HIV infection.
Antibody maturation and HIV diversification patterns in African women provide additional support for use of the MAA to identify populations with recent HIV infection.
Nevirapine given once-daily for the first 6, 14, or 28 weeks of life to infants exposed to HIV-1via breastfeeding reduces transmission through this route compared with single-dose nevirapine at birth or neonatally. We aimed to assess incremental safety and efficacy of extension of such prophylaxis to 6 months.
In our phase 3, randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled HPTN 046 trial, we assessed the incremental benefit of extension of once-daily infant nevirapine from age 6 weeks to 6 months. We enrolled breastfeeding infants born to mothers with HIV-1 in four African countries within 7 days of birth. Following receipt of nevirapine from birth to 6 weeks, infants without HIV infection were randomly allocated (by use of a computer-generated permuted block algorithm with random block sizes and stratified by site and maternal antiretroviral treatment status) to receive extended nevirapine prophylaxis or placebo until 6 months or until breastfeeding cessation, whichever came first. The primaryefficacy endpoint was HIV-1 infection in infants at 6 months and safety endpoints were adverse reactions in both groups. We used Kaplan-Meier analyses to compare differences in the primary outcome between groups. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, number NCT00074412.
Between June 19, 2008, and March 12, 2010, we randomly allocated 1527 infants (762 nevirapine and 765 placebo); five of whom had HIV-1 infection at randomisation and were excluded from the primary analyses. In Kaplan-Meier analysis, 1.1% (95% CI 0.3–1.8) of infants who received extended nevirapine developed HIV-1 between 6 weeks and 6 months compared with 2.4% (1.3–3.6) of controls (difference 1.3%, 95% CI 0–2.6), equating to a 54% reduction in transmission (p=0.049). However, mortality (1.2% for nevirapine vs 1.1% for placebo; p=0.81) and combined HIV infection and mortality rates (2.3% vs 3.2%; p=0.27) did not differ between groups at 6 months. 125 (16%) of 758 infants given extended nevirapine and 116 (15%) of 761 controls had serious adverse events, but frequency of adverse events, serious adverse events, and deaths did not differ significantly between treatment groups.
Nevirapine prophylaxis can safely be used to provide protection from mother-to-child transmission of HIV-1 via breastfeeding for infants up to 6 months of age.
US National Institutes of Health.
Nevirapine-based antiretroviral therapy is the predominant (and often the only) regimen available for children in resource-limited settings. Nevirapine resistance after exposure to the drug for prevention of maternal-to-child human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) transmission is common, a problem that has led to the recommendation of ritonavir-boosted lopinavir in such settings. Regardless of whether there has been prior exposure to nevirapine, the performance of nevirapine versus ritonavir-boosted lopinavir in young children has not been rigorously established.
In a randomized trial conducted in six African countries and India, we compared the initiation of HIV treatment with zidovudine, lamivudine, and either nevirapine or ritonavir-boosted lopinavir in HIV-infected children 2 to 36 months of age who had no prior exposure to nevirapine. The primary end point was virologic failure or discontinuation of treatment by study week 24.
A total of 288 children were enrolled; the median percentage of CD4+ T cells was 15%, and the median plasma HIV type 1 (HIV-1) RNA level was 5.7 log10 copies per milliliter. The percentage of children who reached the primary end point was significantly higher in the nevirapine group than in the ritonavir-boosted lopinavir group (40.8% vs. 19.3%; P<0.001). Among the nevirapine-treated children with virologic failure for whom data on resistance were available, more than half (19 of 32) had resistance at the time of virologic failure. In addition, the time to a protocol-defined toxicity end point was shorter in the nevirapine group (P = 0.04), as was the time to death (P = 0.06).
Outcomes were superior with ritonavir-boosted lopinavir among young children with no prior exposure to nevirapine. Factors that may have contributed to the sub-optimal results with nevirapine include elevated viral load at baseline, selection for nevirapine resistance, background regimen of nucleoside reverse-transcriptase inhibitors, and the standard ramp-up dosing strategy. The results of this trial present policymakers with difficult choices. (Funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and others; P1060 ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT00307151.)