Background, aims and methodology Preventing new HIV infections is critical. However, less than one in five people has access to proven prevention methods, (1) and ‘for every person placed on antiretroviral treatment in 2006, another six people became newly infected with HIV’. (2) Efforts to utilise existing prevention strategies better, and to identify new ones, are therefore imperative. (3) Apart from male circumcision, results of several prevention trials have been disappointing, including the use of acyclovir to reduce HIV transmission by suppressing herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV2). Although not statistically significant, the PRO 2000 microbicide gel results are promising and more results, such as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), are expected in the next few years.