Efforts in developing an effective vaccine for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) has been challenging as HIV strains are highly variable and exhibit extraordinary mutability. Despite condom usage and pre-exposure prophylaxis as excellent prevention strategies, lack of accessibility in some developing countries and low adherence due to sociocultural factors continue to act as barriers in reducing the HIV epidemic. Microbicides are topical therapies developed to prevent HIV and other sexually transmitted infections during intercourse. Microbicides applied vaginally or rectally are intended to prevent HIV infection at the site of transmission by either inhibiting its entry into immune cells or prevent viral replication. This review will summarize some of the current state-of-the-art microbicide formulations that are in preclinical and clinical stages of development and discuss some of the challenges associated with microbicide development.
© 2018 American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics.