The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has teamed up with Intarcia Therapeutics to invest upwards of $140 million with the intent of developing the first once or twice-yearly anti-HIV prophylactic to help prevent the spread of HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa and other countries.
Intarcia is now in important stages of developing the new technology, which will ultimately erase the possibility of anyone accidentally skipping their required dosage. And the dream reaches far beyond HIV prevention. In fact, the company hopes to expand this treatment to other diseases, like auto immune disorders and type II diabetes — the latter is awaiting approval from the Food and Drug Administration.
Intarcia’s chairman and president Kurt Graves recently spoke at Fortune’sBrainstorm Health conference, and argued that while administering medicine via pills and injections works for short-term illnesses, those with long-term diseases often forget to take their treatment from time to time, which can impact their progress.
This implant proves to be a perfect solution. In essence, the implant is actually a pump, which slowly dispenses a person’s medicine each day for a whole year.
By making a 4-millimeter incision in a person’s torso, medical professionals are able to slip the “pump” beneath the skin, an experience Graves said would be painless.
During a demonstration on a fake dummy, which lasted only 30 seconds, he showed an audience just how easy it will be. Watch it below: