SEATTLE — A combination of HIV prevention and treatment almost completely eliminated viral transmission in heterosexual couples in which only one partner had the disease, a researcher reported.

In early results from an open-label study, the combination reduced expected transmissions between partners by 96%, according to Jared Baeten, MD, of the University of Washington in Seattle.

The finding appears to validate the idea of giving the HIV-negative partner oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) as a “bridge” until or even after the infected partner begins full-scale anti-retroviral therapy (ART), Baeten said here at the 2015 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections.

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