24th of July findings from the PARTNER 2 study were released at the 22nd International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018) in Amsterdam.
The PARTNER study recruited couples across 14 different European countries, where one partner was HIV positive and the other wasn’t. It monitored instances of condomless sex between them.
Results for PARTNER 1 demonstrated that people living with HIV on effective treatment could not pass the virus on.
However, the statistical certainty of this was not as convincing for gay men (or anal sex), as it was for vaginal sex.
PARTNER 2 results, however, look only at instances of condomless anal sex.
The results demonstrate “a precise rate of within-couple transmission of zero” for same-sex male couples as heterosexual couples.
Dr Michael Brady, Medical Director at Terrence Higgins Trust, said:
‘We’re thrilled that the PARTNER 2 results are out and confirm what we already knew: that people living with HIV on effective treatment cannot pass the virus on to their sexual partners.
‘The two studies (PARTNER 1 and PARTNER 2) scientifically prove this and will be so powerful in helping to fight the stigma and myths that still surround HIV.
‘What’s most important now is ensuring that we continue to share this message and educate people as far and wide as possible, to help improve the lives of people living with HIV across the world.’
Terence Higgins Trust 24.7.2017