Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Dry Sex and Implications for Topical Microbicide Development

by Stephanie N. Tillman, Alliance for Microbicide Development
The Microbicide Quarterly, Volume 6, Number 2 (April-June 2008)

The issue

Cultural practices employed in pre-coital preparation vary widely both geographically and individually. What is generally termed “dry sex” is one such practice, researched and reported on for its possible contributions to HIV and STI infection. Through the use of diverse products or methods, women in many cultures and countries worldwide alter natural vaginal secretions prior to sex, with potential implications for the acceptability, use, and efficacy of a topical, lubricating microbicide formulated for insertion prior to sex.

This review of the purposes and prevalence of dry sex, together with trial participant feedback from clinical trials, is meant to encourage attention to this topic and discussion of its importance. Seven topical candidates with indications against HIV and STIs are now in the clinical pipeline, and most of them are being tested in countries where dry sex practices have been reported.The implications of these practices are not limited to clinical trials; they may well prove important in the use of topical microbicides when they become available.

Read the rest of this article beginning on p.8 of The Microbicide Quarterly. Data from IRMA's lubricant survey are featured on p. 12.

The Microbicide Quarterly (TMQ)—one of the Alliance's principal publications—focuses on product development, key discoveries in microbicide science, and issues related to clinical trials. TMQ also frequently publishes meeting and conference reports and provides updates on US microbicide policy initiatives. Click here for more.

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