Why is Quadrimune important for HIV-infected children?
This combination of four drugs reduces pill burden so that a child does not have to swallow many pills. In addition, the formulation is child-friendly as it lacks the bitter taste associated with syrups. Since younger children find it difficult to swallow tablets, a caretaker often has to crush tablets before administering them to a child; this poses a challenge in terms of maintaining the potency of the drug as it goes through the stomach and raises questions about dosage. The Quadrimune granules, therefore, overcome this obstacle as well.
Why was Epicentre in charge of this study in Uganda?
Epicentre runs a research center in Mbarara where participants in the study were enrolled and followed-up. Our presence for more than twenty years in Mbarara is a critical asset in the implementation of studies—such as the current research—that necessitates adherence to strict international standards. Our multidisciplinary team has established several partnerships with international research institutions.
Epicentre is working on the introduction of Dolutegravir among adults in Malawi with MSF and the Ministry of Health; would this drug be relevant in a similar combination for HIV-infected children?
Because of dosing issues associated with current formulations, Dolutegravir cannot be used in children weighing less than 20 kg. A formulation containing Dolutegravir for younger children, similar to Quadrimune would be a wonderful news. The development of a combination of HIV drugs that would include Dolutegravir is critical to ensure better access to more efficient and adapted treatments for very neglected populations. At Epicentre, our colleagues are proud to collaborate towards innovations to improve access to better and more adapted drugs.