A slow-release drug delivery system could make it easier for people with HIV to adhere to the strict dosing schedule necessary to fight the virus, say researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Brigham and Women's Hospital, both in Cambridge, Massachusetts, who developed it. The design of the new capsule allows it to deliver a week’s worth of HIV medication in a single dose, gradually releasing the antiretroviral drugs throughout the week.
According to the researchers, the slow-release capsule could improve patient compliance and adherence to treatment schedules. It may also benefit those at high risk for HIV by improving the effectiveness of preventive treatments.
A clinical trial using the drug delivery system is being developed. One day, it could aid in the treatment of HIV and other chronic diseases, as the design of the capsule allows for different drugs to be used. A new capsule that can stay in the body longer is also in development.