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September 21, 2009

Tobacco, marijuana and alcohol may lower levels of some anti-HIV drugs

"Tobacco and marijuana may reduce levels of atazanavir (Reyataz) in the body, whilst tobacco and alcohol may lower efavirenz (Sustiva or Stocrin) levels in individuals who carry specific genetic variations, according to two posters presented last week at the 49th Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) in San Francisco. ...

A limitation of these studies is that the investigators did not specifically look at adherence, which may be influenced by substance use. They also did not report the amount of substances used. The first report did not distinguish between boosted and unboosted atazanavir, which has a major impact on drug concentrations. The second did not explore whether liver damage due to heavy drinking might play a role in altered drug processing."

Read more in Aidsmap, September 21, 2009.