Postpartum Antiretrovirals and HIV Transmission Through Breastfeeding

The Breastfeeding, Antiretrovirals, and Nutrition (BAN) study randomized mother-infant pairs post-delivery to determine whether 28 weeks of triple therapy (for the mother) or daily infant nevirapine was more effective in prevention of HIV transmission through breastfeeding.  Those pairs that had at least 90% medication adherence showed a 52% reduction in rates of HIV transmission.  This result emphasizes the importance of medication adherence during breastfeeding for prevention of transmission.  Although not completely conclusive, research indicates that adherence to medication and decrease in transmission rates are on a continuum - the higher the adherence rate the lower the transmission rate.  Researchers indicate that longer term studies are needed to validate their results.


Davis NL, Miller WC, Hudgens MG, Chasela CS, Sichali D, Kayira D, Nelson JAE, Stringer JSA, Ellington SR, Kourtis AP, Jamieson DJ, van der Horst C, for the BAN study team. Adherence to extended postpartum antiretrovirals is associated with decreased breast milk HIV-1 transmission. AIDS. 2014 Nov28;28(18):2739-2749.



Original Article (subscription may be required)