New child-friendly HIV treatment offers sweet hope

Strawberry-flavoured drug set for global use by end-2020 could help save more lives than current options

A mother in South Africa trying to give her two-year-old child an antiretroviral medicine as the baby spits out the solution and cries. A new strawberry-flavoured paediatric antiretroviral formulation announced last week will replace older, bitter-tasting
A mother in South Africa trying to give her two-year-old child an antiretroviral medicine as the baby spits out the solution and cries. A new strawberry-flavoured paediatric antiretroviral formulation announced last week will replace older, bitter-tasting medicines, as well as those requiring refrigeration and even a syrup that is 40 per cent alcohol. It will be available for less than US$1 (S$1.36) a day. PHOTO: GREG LOMAS/DNDI

More than 300 children globally lose their lives every day because of Aids.

Many of these deaths could be prevented if the current line of paediatric antiretroviral drugs were not so bitter, making them unpalatable for the children, who often spit out their life-saving medication.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 07, 2019, with the headline 'New child-friendly HIV treatment offers sweet hope'. Subscribe