Secondary Logo

Journal Logo

Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Delivery of TDF/FTC for Pre-exposure Prophylaxis to Prevent HIV-1 Acquisition in Young Adult Men Who Have Sex With Men and Transgender Women of Color Using a Urine Adherence Assay

Lalley-Chareczko, Linden MA*; Clark, Devon BS*; Conyngham, Caitlin MPH; Zuppa, Athena MD; Moorthy, Ganesh PhD§; Mounzer, Karam MD*; Koenig, Helen MD, MPH*,‖

JAIDS Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes: October 1, 2018 - Volume 79 - Issue 2 - p 173–178
doi: 10.1097/QAI.0000000000001772
Prevention Research

Background: Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV prevention with daily tenofovir and emtricitabine is effective when taken consistently. Currently, there is no objective way to monitor PrEP adherence. Urine has been shown to be highly correlated with plasma tenofovir levels, with urine tenofovir levels >1000 ng/mL demonstrating recent (1–2 days) adherence to PrEP.

Setting: This study was conducted at an urban community health center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Methods: PrEP was administered to 50 young men who have sex with men and transgender women of color using weekly, biweekly, and/or monthly dispensation schedules. Primary objectives were retention at 48 weeks (in care at week 48 and completing ≥50% of medication pickups) and adherence assessed by urine tenofovir levels. Risk behaviors and sexually transmitted infection diagnoses were also collected.

Results: Seventy percent of participants were retained in care at 48 weeks. The proportion of subjects with urine tenofovir consistent with recent adherence was 80, 74.4, 82.4, 82.4, and 69.7% at weeks 4, 12, 24, 36, and 48, respectively. Sixty-one sexually transmitted infections were diagnosed over 231 screenings throughout 48 weeks, with no significant change between the first and second 24-week periods (P = 0.43; 0 seroconversions). At week 48, more than half of subjects reported an increase or no change in condom use, an increase in their ability to discuss HIV with partners, and no change in number of sexual partners from baseline.

Conclusions: These data demonstrate PrEP can be successfully delivered to a high-risk population with high program retention and medication adherence measured by urine tenofovir levels.

*Philadelphia FIGHT Community Health Centers, Philadelphia, PA;

AIDS Activities Coordinating Office, Philadelphia Department of Public Health, Philadelphia, PA;

Division of Pediatric Critical Care Medicine, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA;

§Division of Clinical Pharmacology & Therapeutics, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA; and

Division of Infectious Diseases, MacGregor Infectious Diseases Clinic, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.

Correspondence to: Linden Lalley-Chareczko, MA, Philadelphia FIGHT Community Health Centers, 1233 Loucst Street, 5th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19107 (e-mail:

Supported by a grant from Gilead Sciences, Inc. (IN-US-276-1295), Funds were used for medical equipment and supplies, patient stipends, and clinical analyses.

Presented at the Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections (CROI); February 13–16, 2017; Seattle, Washington, abstract #975.

H.K. and K.M. have served as consultants to Gilead Sciences, Inc., the manufacturer of Truvada. H.K. has received a research grant from Gilead Sciences, Inc. The remaining authors have no conflicts of interest to disclose.

Received March 15, 2018

Accepted June 06, 2018

Copyright © 2018 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.