The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence has published an evidence summary on the use of Gilead's Truvada for HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in adults at high risk of infection.

According to best available evidence, Truvada (emtricitabine and tenofovir disoproxil) is clinically effective in reducing HIV acquisition in high-risk people who are HIV-negative.

In the trials included in the review, the drug reduced the relative risk of acquiring HIV infection by between 44 percent and 86 percent compared with placebo or no prophylaxis.

Also, the evidence summary suggests that the provision of PrEP may increase access to other health services such as HIV testing, sexually transmitted infection and hepatitis B screening and support for high-risk sexual behaviour.

However, the review also highlights a number of issues that are important to consider in the planning of PrEP services, such as uptake and adherence, sexual behaviour, drug resistance, safety, prioritisation for prophylaxis and cost effectiveness.

The cost-effectiveness of PrEP is likely to be dependent on theses variables, NICE said. Truvada's list price is £355.73 for 30 tablets, but the drug is offered at a confidential discount to the NHS for HIV prevention.

Truvada was approved by EU regulators for HIV PrEP in August.