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CHAARM has released its fourth annual Newsletter

The EU funded project Combined Highly Active Anti-Retroviral Microbicides (CHAARM) has issued its fourth annual newsletter, providing an overview of the project, updated information on its activities, coverage of events and interviews with key researchers.

The fourth annual newsletter marks the end of the fourth year of the CHAARM programme. During this year, research has focussed more on pre-clinical development of the most promising compounds developed in the earlier stages of the programme. One of these, a non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor developed by Dr Koen Augustyns and his team at the University of Antwerp, features in this newsletter. Development of this inhibitor, compound UAMC-01398, provides a good example of the collaborative nature of the CHAARM programme. Collaboration has as well marked the development of a microbicide gel coformulation of two anti-retroviral drugs, dapivirine and darunavir. The two drugs have been formulated as a gel and in vaginal rings, tested in combination for anti-viral activity, and both formulations have undergone pharmacokinetic studies with ex vivo challenge studies being performed to provide pharmacodynamic data. Meanwhile planning for a phase I trial of the combination gel is in progress. Similar stories can be repeated for the other compounds under development in the programme. The work of the CHAARM programme was presented at a highly successful satellite symposium held in Brussels as part of the 14th European AIDS Clinical Society Conference on the 16th of October (also featured in this newsletter). The complete newsletter is available at http://chaarm.eu/newsroom/newsletters CHAARM project - is a large scale collaborative project co-funded by the European Union under the 7th Framework Programme (FP7) for Research and Technological Development. The purpose of the project is to develop combinations of new and existing microbicides that will be designed to be specifically targeted agents, which can be applied topically to reduce transmission of HIV during sexual intercourse.

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