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Long-term outcomes of bictegravir/emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide as first-line therapy and as switch strategy in virologically suppressed persons with HIV: data from the ICONA cohort.

OBJECTIVES: To assess the effectiveness of bictegravir/emtricitabine/tenofovir alafenamide (BIC/FTC/TAF) among people poorly represented in clinical trials and potentially at higher risk of suboptimal response to ART.

METHODS: Observational cohort study on persons with HIV (PWH) enrolled in ICONA who started BIC/FTC/TAF as initial therapy or as switching regimen while virologically suppressed. Primary endpoint was time to treatment failure (TF): new AIDS/death or virological failure (VF) or discontinuation for toxicity/failure. Secondary endpoints were time to treatment discontinuation for toxicity (TDT) and to VF. Groups of interest were those aged >50 years, female sex, and advanced HIV disease at first ART start. Probability of the events overall and according to groups and adjusted HR for every endpoint were calculated by Kaplan-Meier curves and Cox regression models.

RESULTS: Nine hundred and thirty-three ART-naive and 1655 ART-experienced PWH initiated BIC/FTC/TAF. Over a median follow-up of 69.8 weeks, 89 (9.6%) PWH at their first regimen experienced TF. PWH aged >50 years had 1.83-fold (95% CI: 1.19-2.83) higher risk of TF; PWH with advanced HIV disease had 2.21-fold (95% CI: 1.53-3.82) higher risk; there were no differences in TF according to sex.Over a median follow-up of 146.3 weeks, 109 (6.6%) out of 1655 switching PWH experienced TF; no differences were found in the risk of TF, TDT and VF according to groups of interest.

CONCLUSIONS: Overall, BIC/FTC/TAF is well tolerated and virologically effective in the real-world scenario for ART-naive and -experienced PWH. Older ART-naive PWH and those with advanced HIV disease may respond less well as the burden of diseases might compromise treatment efficacy.

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