China Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the sale of a new drug for the treatment of HIV-1 infection, the maker of the drug said.
Aikening, or albuvirtide for injection (ABT), can be used with other antiretroviral drugs to treat infected patients who have been treated with antiviral drugs but still suffer from viral replication, according to Frontier Biotech, a pharmaceutical company based in the east Chinese city of Nanjing.
Data from clinical trials showed that Aikening was effective against major strains of HIV, including resistant viruses, and the efficacy was long-acting, according to the company.
"As a long-acting injectable drug with a new mechanism of action, ABT has the potential to be a significant addition and improvement to the currently all oral drug regimen," said Xie Dong, chairman of Frontier Biotech.
Patients who used Aikening didn't show severe symptoms of side-effects, and they only have to take one injection every week, according to the company.
"It is expected that Aikening will have a big potential in markets at home and abroad," said Li Taisheng, an AIDS expert with Peking Union Medical College Hospital.
Official data showed that as of June last year, China had about 718,270 people living with HIV/AIDS and 221,628 people had died of AIDS-related diseases.