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Eastern Europe urged to prepare now for growing threat of HIV resistance

Eastern Europe is warned to prepare for HIV drug resistance, a problem that is now being witnessed in patients in Poland after only five years of HIV treatment being available. Experts at an HIV congress in Warsaw heard today that FUZEON (enfuvirtide, formerly known as T-20), the latest weapon in the fight against HIV drug resistance, is a valuable tool to both patients and payers in the treatment of HIV, particularly when used earlier in pre-treated patients.

Eastern Europe urged to prepare for HIV resistance

John Bowis, OBE, Member of the European Parliament applauds the Ministry of Health in Poland for taking a pro-active lead in the fight against HIV and drug resistance: "The growing problem of HIV resistance is a serious issue which all members of the EU have a responsibility to manage. We must commit to share knowledge, particularly those countries more experienced in tackling the HIV epidemic, in an effort to provide a consistent standard of care and avert a potential healthcare crisis. We need to ensure that all European countries are benefiting from new treatments and are allocating vital resources where they will be of most value."

The increasing prevalence of HIV drug resistance means that many patients can no longer benefit from the first three classes of HIV drugs. Unlike existing anti-HIV drugs, which act inside the cell once it has been infected, FUZEON works on the outside actively blocking the fusion of the virus with cells of the human immune system (CD4 cells). Because of this very different mechanism of action, FUZEON is active against HIV strains that have become resistant to current therapies. FUZEON reduces HIV levels and increases CD4 cell counts even in patients with resistance to the three conventional classes of HIV drugs.

Improving survival in pre-treated patients carrying drug-resistant HIV

Reduction in HIV levels and improvements in CD4 cell counts have been shown to result in improved s
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Contact: Alexander Watson
Alexander.watson@ketchum.com
44-771-267-5990
Ketchum
27-Oct-2003


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