Penta is the coordinator for the newly funded EDCTP project – UNIVERSAL! Later in the day, we will be speaking with partners at the official kick-off meeting.
UNIVERSAL will develop, evaluate and register two new antiretroviral formulations for infants and children newly diagnosed with HIV initiating antiretroviral therapy, and for children failing first-line therapy who need to switch to a new treatment regimen.
Access to antiretroviral treatment for children under the age of 15 living with HIV continues to lag behind adults. UNAIDS data indicate that of the estimated 1.8 million children with HIV in 2019, only 53% had access to treatment compared to 68% of adults (UNAIDS 2020).
Many of these children do not receive optimal paediatric treatment formulations, or state-of-the-art drugs. Studies show that adults living with HIV on effective antiretroviral therapy have significant gains in life expectancy, and we believe that children should be able to benefit from similar gains.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has prioritised these two new formulations as being the critical optimal formulations needed to achieve the best outcomes for children living with HIV.
Read the press release to learn more about the project: New European-African collaboration to develop UNIVERSAL treatments for children living with HIV