Background. Despite sparse efficacy data, tenofovir–emtricitabine or tenofovir–lamivudine plus nevirapine is used in many resource-constrained settings.
Methods. This retrospective cohort study included patients initiating nevirapine-based antiretroviral therapy (ART) with either tenofovir–emtricitabine or lamivudine (tenofovir group) or zidovudine–lamivudine (zidovudine group). Clinical, virologic, and immunologic evaluations were performed at baseline and every 6 months. Virologic failure was defined as 2 consecutive human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-RNA values >1000 copies/mL. Patients were included from ART initiation until time of failure, regimen switch, discontinuation, or last HIV-RNA measurement. Cox proportional hazards regression was used to model factors influencing time to failure. Bias due to dependent censoring was investigated via inverse probability weighted pooled logistic regression.
Results. A total of 5547 patients were evaluated; 1484 (26.8%) were in the tenofovir group and 4063 (73.2%) were in the zidovudine group. In the adjusted model, tenofovir regimen (hazard ratio [HR], 1.47; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.21–1.79) and higher baseline log10 HIV-RNA (HR, 1.15; 95% CI, 1.03–1.28) were associated with virologic failure. Higher baseline log10 CD4+ cell count (HR, 0.50; 95% CI, .40–.63) and increasing age (HR, 0.98; 95% CI, .97–.99) decreased the risk of virologic failure. Inverse probability weighting results were consistent with the primary analysis.
Conclusions. Compared with zidovudine–lamivudine, the use of tenofovir–lamivudine or emtricitabine in combination with nevirapine was a strong predictor of virologic failure in our cohort, which was not explained by other risk factors or criteria for regimen selection.