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Microbicides are substances that will potentially help prevent the transmission of HIV and other STIs when applied either to the vagina or rectum. Expected to be delivered as creams or gels, they may eventually be included in cervical rings or caps, sponges, and diaphragms. They would prevent transmission of disease by killing or inactivating the pathogens, by creating physical barriers, by interfering with entry of the virus to the target cell, by preventing replication once the virus has entered the cell, or by boosting the vagina’s natural defences.
Microbicides are a form of New Prevention Technology (NPT) intended to accompany existing education programs, awareness campaigns and male and female condoms. While microbicides are not yet available, they could have a positive impact on reducing the risk of HIV transmission. Their development represents a much needed female-controlled prevention tool.
As a strong proponent of research into microbicides and new prevention technologies, CAS has coordinated the Steering Committee which developed the Canada Microbicide Action Plan (CMAP). The CMAP is the result of a collaborative process that involved researchers, government, industry and the community.
Members who wish to inform themselves about this new prevention technology are invited to join CAS' working group on microbicides MAGNET.
Microbicides. © Canadian AIDS Society. Published 09/02/2009. Updated 02/28/2010. Web. Retrieved 05/21/2013 from http://www.cdnaids.ca/microbicides